Bremer has lunch with Bush at White House

June 30, 2004 at 4:01 PM

WASHINGTON, June 30 (UPI) -- President George Bush had Ambassador Paul Bremer to lunch at the White House Wednesday to thank him for leading Iraq back to sovereignty.

Bremer, who led the U.S. occupation of Iraq since May 2003, left Baghdad Monday after returning sovereignty to the interim government of President Iyad Allawi, bringing to an end the Coalition Provisional Authority set up in the aftermath of the U.S. invasion to topple Saddam Hussein.

"It's like having a rather large weight lifted off my shoulders," Bremer said in an earlier television interview from the White House lawn. "I'm delighted to be back."

Details of his conversation with Bush were not disclosed. White House spokesman Scott McClellan said, however, the lunch was for Bush to thank Bremer personally for his efforts and to thank him.

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