Tuesday, June 24, 2008

U.S. to turn over control of Al-Anbar to Iraqis

The US military is to hand over security control of the former Sunni insurgent bastion of Anbar province to Iraqi forces in the next 10 days, a US military spokesman announced yesterday.

"The handover of Anbar is expected to take place in the next 10 days," Lieutenant David Russell told reporters, declining to provide an exact date.

Anbar would be the tenth of Iraq's 18 provinces to be handed back to Iraqi forces by the US-led coalition amid a push to transfer security control of the entire country back to Baghdad.

Anbar province in western Iraq, the country's largest, was the epicentre of a brutal Sunni Arab-led fight against the US military after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime in 2003.

In the early years of the insurgency, US forces fought raging battles in the province, especially in the capital Ramadi and the nearby city of Fallujah.

Fallujah became the symbol of the ultra-violent insurgency before it was virtually razed to the ground in November 2004 by a US military assault launched to seize control of the city.

This province was being touted as a write off on only two years ago. Marine CAPT Travis Patriquin and Sheik Sattar, both since killed in Anbar, are largely responsible for setting in motion what became the Anbar Awakening. May they rest in peace.

1 comment:

Brian H said...

Somebody threw sand in the gears!