Italy plans to withdraw troops from Iraq

Italy's foreign minister said Saturday the new government would begin planning the withdrawal of its troops from Iraq next week, in comments made two days after Premier Romano Prodi called the war there "a grave error" that fueled international terrorism. "The government will begin working as soon as next week on a plan to redefine the character of the Italian presence in Iraq, which will become a civilian presence," Foreign Minister Massimo D'Alema said during a visit to Naples. He added that, "ours is not a flight, but a political choice," according to Italian news agencies.