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US Army to lift female combat role ban

24 January 2013 Last updated at 03:30 GMT

US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta has decided to lift the military's ban on women serving in combat, a senior Pentagon official has said.

The move would overturn a 1994 ruling and could open hundreds of thousands of front-line positions and elite commando jobs to women.

The decision is expected to be formally announced on Thursday.

Ben Wright reports.