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US Ambassador warns of 'precipitious' US exit from Iraq

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Baghdad, IraqRyan Crocker, the outgoing US ambassador to Iraq, warned Thursday that the substantial security and political gains here were still fragile and could be reversed, particularly if US troops were too quickly withdrawn.

A day after he and US military commander General Raymond Odierno spoke with President Barack Obama by video-conference, Ambassador Crocker cautioned that Iraq was a complex and still potentially dangerous place.

“Anything can happen – that’s why you have the mantra of 'still fragile, still reversible,' " Crocker told reporters in his last briefing before leaving after two years as head of the US diplomatic mission in Iraq.

“A precipitous withdrawal runs some very severe risks,” he said at the new $592 million US Embassy, officially opened earlier this month .

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