DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN"> Congress approves Iraq war funding. 25/05/2007. ABC News Online

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Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats have backed down from another confrontation with President Bush

Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats have backed down from another confrontation with President Bush (Reuters)

Congress approves Iraq war funding

The US Congress has approved $US100 billion ($122 billion) in new funds for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The funding Bill does not give a timetable for the withdrawal of combat troops from Iraq.

Instead a compromise deal between Democrats and the Bush administration makes non-military reconstruction aid conditional on the Iraqi Government tackling violence in the country.

The Senate voted 80 to 14 to pass the measure hours after it had been approved by the House of Representatives.

The 280 to 142 vote in the House of Representatives had broken a four-month deadlock with President George W Bush over funding the unpopular war.

The war funds are coupled with new domestic money for child health care, more reconstruction after 2005 hurricanes and other programs.

The Bill also raises the US minimum wage for the first time in more than a decade.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, says the Bill is a small step forward on the Iraq war.

"Instead, we should have a giant step forward into a new direction," she said.

Ms Pelosi says Democrats will promptly renew their efforts to pull US combat troops from Iraq in upcoming legislation.

On May 1, Bush vetoed legislation that would have forced the beginning of troop withdrawals by October 1.

- ABC/Reuters

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