US President George W Bush is expected to announce that 30,000 soldiers could return home from Iraq next year in an address tomorrow.

The speech will follow two days of testimony by General David Petraeus to Congress, who warned that an early withdrawal would have 'devastating' consequences.

The Bush administration has urged more time for the current 'surge' strategy, which saw the number of troops increased to 160,000 from its prior level of around 130,000 earlier this year.

Mr Bush is expected to say that the 'surge' could be trimmed by July 2008, when just six months of his presidency would remain.

The US president has long vowed to base his decisions about Iraq on the recommendations of military leaders on the ground.