US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said on Friday US troops in Iraq will be cut by two brigades.
"President (George W.) Bush has authorized an adjustment in US combat brigades in Iraq from 17 to 15," Rumsfeld said, addressing US troops in a military camp east of Falluja.
Two army brigades, which are now stationed in Fort Rilley, Kansas, and Kuwait, will no longer need to go to Iraq.
"The effect of these adjustments will reduce forces in Iraq, by the spring of 2006, below the current high of 160,000 during the (Iraqi) election period to below the 138,000 baseline that had existed before the most recent elections," Rumsfeld said.
Rumsfeld's remarks were the first he has made proposing a drop in troop levels below the baseline.
His aides said details about the cut would be given later at the Pentagon.