August 08, 2006

IQ: 4th Iraqi Army steps up, takes on full responsibility

Let's see the MSM try and make a "grim milestone" out of this:

BAGHDAD — As further evidence to the continued progress of Iraqi security forces, the 4th Iraqi Army Division will officially assume the lead for security operations Aug. 8 in most of Salah ad Din and Kirkuk provinces, previously controlled by units from the 101st Airborne Division.

The handover of forward operating bases and security lead demonstrates the progress being made by the Iraqi security forces, reiterates successes, and highlights the progress of the legitimate Iraqi government as a positive move toward full national sovereignty and self-reliance, said a Multi-National Force-Iraq spokesman.

This transfer occurs as the Iraqi security force takes charge and shows it is capable of coordinating, planning and conducting security operations with Coalition forces acting in a support role. According to a 101st Airborne Division spokesman, the 4th IAD has demonstrated it is fully capable of assuming security responsibility by taking over security operations in provinces covering major cities of Tikrit, Kirkuk and Samarra.

The 4th IAD is the fifth of 10 Iraqi army divisions to assume security responsibility, which represents the halfway mark of Iraqi divisions assuming responsibility for providing security in their country. In total, Iraqi security forces are in the lead with five Iraqi army divisions, 22 army brigades, and 76 army battalions, and the Iraqi National Police have two battalions, for a total of about 275,000 trained forces.

According to Coalition officials, 48 of 110 Forward Operating Bases have been transferred to the Iraqis; the result of the increased capacity of the Iraqi security forces and the Iraqi government.

"This (handover) is a brave quest and significant milestone toward garnering security self-reliance for the Iraqi citizens, the Iraqi security force, and the government of Iraq," said Coalition officials.

According to a fact sheet released by the 101st Airborne Division, "more than 275,000 trained and equipped Iraqi security personnel work every day to protect Iraq and its people. These numbers continue to grow as more troops are scheduled to assume independent control in the coming months." [...]

Ambassador Khalilzad and General Casey released a joint statement on the 4th IAD handover.

Posted by Kyer at August 8, 2006 12:29 PM | TrackBack