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U.S. mayors: End wars in Afghanistan and Iraq

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Mayors call for Congress to redirect military spending to U.S. projects
  • They cite the high human and financial tolls exacted by the wars
  • City leaders from across the country are attending an annual conference

(CNN) -- A group of U.S. mayors urged Congress on Friday to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and redirect money spent to support those conflicts to domestic interests.

The call to bring a speedy end to the wars came in a resolution presented at the opening of the Annual Conference of U.S. Mayors in Baltimore.

The resolution, signed by such leaders as Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and Santa Fe, New Mexico, Mayor David Coss, cited the high cost of supporting the wars, both in financial and human terms, in calling for their end.

"The United States Conference of Mayors calls on the U.S. Congress to bring these war dollars home to meet vital human needs, promote job creation, rebuild our infrastructure, aid municipal and state governments, and develop a new economy based upon renewable, sustainable energy," the resolution said, noting that the United States pays $126 billion a year to support the wars that have killed more than 6,000 U.S. troops.

Elena Temple, a spokeswoman for the conference, said the resolution is the first since Vietnam to call for an end to war funding and spending the money at home instead. A vote by the full conference is expected to take place Monday.

In addition to the nine signatories, the resolution was supported by the conference president, Elizabeth Kautz of Burnsville, Minnesota.

The conference concludes Monday. Notable attendees include House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.