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One Of Swarthmore’s Graduation Speakers Withdraws Over Controversy

(The campus of Swarthmore College.  File photo provided by Swarthmore College)

(The campus of Swarthmore College. File photo provided by Swarthmore College)

SWARTHMORE, Pa. (AP) — The former head of the World Bank has withdrawn as a commencement speaker at Swarthmore College.

The private Quaker school in suburban Philadelphia says alumnus Robert Zoellick withdrew Friday after some students criticized his support for the Iraq war and his role in President George W. Bush’s administration.

According to Swarthmore President Rebecca Chopp, Zoellick withdrew by saying he doesn’t want to disrupt “what should be a special day for the graduates, their families and friends.”

Zoellick is a senior fellow at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. He was president of the World Bank from 2007 to 2012.

Zoellick was to have received an honorary degree along with entrepreneur Tralance Addy and novelist Lorene Cary. Addy and Cary will still speak at Swarthmore’s June 2 commencement.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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