Poland's government asks president to approve Iraq pullout by Oct. 31

Poland's new government formally asked the president Tuesday to approve the country's withdrawal from Iraq by October 31, 2008. The future of the mission in Iraq, where Poland has 900 troops, has been a source of friction between new Prime Minister Donald Tusk and President Lech Kaczynski. The mission's current mandate expires on December 31. Tusk wants a pullout next year while the president advocates staying in Iraq longer. On Tuesday, Tusk's Cabinet sent a motion to Kaczynski - the military's commander in chief and a staunch US ally - asking him to extend the mission only until October 31, 2008, a government statement said.