The US will withdraw more than a third of its troops from Iraq within weeks, its top Middle East commander has said.

Gen Kenneth McKenzie told reporters the troop presence would be reduced from about 5,200 to 3,000 during September.

Those remaining will continue to advise and assist Iraqi security forces in “rooting out the final remnants” of the jihadist group Islamic State.

Last month, US President Donald Trump reaffirmed that he planned to pull all troops out of Iraq as soon as possible.

He is expected to hail the reduction of forces as progress towards his 2016 election campaign promise to disentangle the US from “endless wars”.

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