Iraqi VP warns against quick US troop withdrawal

Neither Iraq nor Western interests will benefit from the US Democratic Party-led call for the quick withdrawal of American troops, Iraq's vice president said Saturday. Speaking to reporters in Tokyo, Vice President Tariq Al-Hashimi said the US-led coalition troops operating in Iraq should not be withdrawn before the country's own armed forces are functioning autonomously and professionally. "Many of the Democrats are now pushing the White House for a quick withdrawal of troops from Iraq. This is not going to benefit either Iraqi or Western interests," Hashimi said.