U.S. Eyes U.N. Peacekeepers for Iraq After 2011

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BAGHDAD - The top U.S. military commander in Iraq says U.N. peacekeepers may be needed after American troops leave in 2011 if tensions between Kurds and Arabs aren't resolved.

Army Gen. Ray Odierno said the hope is that Kurdish security forces will have combined with the Arab-dominated Iraqi Army by then and the peacekeepers wouldn't be necessary.

Iraq's Kurds want several areas of the country's north to be part of their autonomous region, a move opposed by the Arab-dominated central government.

Odierno noted that Iraq's Kurd-Arab tensions have been a problem for years and that it is not known if they can be resolved soon.

© 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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