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Bush Calls on Congress Not To Cut Off Funding for US Troops in Iraq


President Bush has called on the U.S. Congress not to cut off funding for the Iraq war.

At a news conference in Washington today, Mr. Bush said members of Congress have every right to express their opposition to his decision to send thousands of additional U.S. combat troops to Iraq. He spoke as the U.S. House of Representatives is debating a non-binding resolution disapproving of Mr. Bush's troop increase.

But the president made clear he does not want the non-binding resolution to turn into a bill that would restrict emergency funding for the Iraq war. He said U.S. troops are counting on their elected leaders in Washington to provide them with the support they need for their mission.

Several Democratic lawmakers are working in committees on legislation that would link emergency funding requested by the president for military operations to requirements that the troops be adequately trained and equipped before they can be deployed.

Asked about Iran, Mr. Bush said he is convinced that the Iranian government is supplying deadly weapons to fighters in Iraq, even though he does not know if the orders came from top leaders in Tehran.

President Bush also praised the agreement reached at the six-party talks in Beijing aimed at ending North Korea's nuclear program, calling it an "important step" in the right direction.

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