Sunday, January 1, 2012

Iran hails US pullout from Iraq

Iraqis wave their national flag during a celebration marking the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq in Baghdad's Adhamiyah neighborhood on December 30, 2011

Source: Press TV

Iran's Foreign Ministry has hailed the end to US military occupation of Iraq as a great political triumph for the Iraqi nation and government.

“Through the years of foreign military presence, Iraq was faced with major political and security challenges,” said Iran's Foreign Ministry in a statement released on Sunday.

The statement added that Iraq was able to safely navigate through a plot to wage civil and tribal war in the Muslim country due to a national resolve and the accurate understanding that Iraqi political and religious leaders maintained about the sensitive nature of regional and international developments.

Iran once again expressed its readiness to continue with the constructive role it has been playing in Iraq by supporting the political process in the country and offering material and technical assistance in the nation's reconstruction effort.

December 31 marked the termination of a nearly nine-year US military invasion and occupation of Iraq in accordance with the Status of Forces Agreement signed by Baghdad and Washington during the administration of former president of the United States, George W. Bush.

“I declare this day, the 31st of December, on which the withdrawal of foreign forces from Iraq is complete, as a national day,” said Iraq's Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki on Saturday.

Despite the withdrawal, however, some 8,000 US troops have remained in the country's northern Kurdistan region, reports say.

Along with the American troops, some 14 warplanes, 125 helicopters and 28 US drones continue to remain in the country's northern region.

In addition, US President Barack Obama has vowed to maintain what he has described as a robust diplomatic presence in Iraq that includes a large number of armed security guards.

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