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Head of inquiry into Iraq war tells UK prime minister report to be published next year

FILE - In this Thursday, July 30, 2009 file photo, John Chilcot, the chairman of the Iraq Inquiry, speaks to the media as the inquiry gets underway in London. The Iraq-war inquiry chairman pledged in a letter released Thursday, Oct. 29, 2015 that his long-awaited report will be published next summer, disappointing Britain’s prime minister and families of slain service personnel who were hoping that it would happen sooner. John Chilcot’s new estimated time of delivery comes after months of pressure to complete the investigation, which began in 2009. The inquiry into decisions and mistakes in Britain's planning and execution of the war has been delayed in part by a process that gives those who are criticized a chance to respond. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, file)

FILE - In this Thursday, July 30, 2009 file photo, John Chilcot, the chairman of the Iraq Inquiry, speaks to the media as the inquiry gets underway in London. The Iraq-war inquiry chairman pledged in a letter released Thursday, Oct. 29, 2015 that his long-awaited report will be published next summer, disappointing Britain’s prime minister and families of slain service personnel who were hoping that it would happen sooner. John Chilcot’s new estimated time of delivery comes after months of pressure to complete the investigation, which began in 2009. The inquiry into decisions and mistakes in Britain's planning and execution of the war has been delayed in part by a process that gives those who are criticized a chance to respond. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, file)  (The Associated Press)

The chair of the Iraq war inquiry has announced a long-awaited timetable for publication of the report — promising Britain's prime minister it will be out in June or July 2016.

John Chilcot's pledge to Prime Minister David Cameron comes after months of pressure to complete the investigation, which began in 2009. The inquiry into decisions and mistakes in Britain's planning and execution of the war has been delayed in part by a process that gives those who are criticized a chance to respond.

Families of military personnel killed in Iraq had threatened to go to court, saying the delays were prolonging their suffering.

Chilcot says in a letter released Thursday that the report will first be given to a panel that will check sensitive national security material.