facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Odierno now leads U.S. troops in Iraq

Sept. 16, 2008 at 6:46 AM   |   Comments

| License Photo
BAGHDAD, Sept. 16 (UPI) -- U.S. Army Gen. Raymond Odierno took over as the top U.S. officer in Iraq Tuesday, taking the reins during a ceremony from Gen. David Petraeus.

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates presided over the ceremony, traveling unannounced to Iraq for the event and to visit with Iraqi military and governmental leaders, The New York Times reported.

Petraeus will assume command of U.S. forces across the Middle East and Southwest Asia.

During a dinner Monday, Gates presented Petraeus with the Defense Distinguished Service Medal and presented U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker with the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Civilian Service, the Pentagon's highest honor for a civilian, the Times said.

Commenting on the Iraqis' assumption of security duties, Petraeus said U.S. combat troops "are by and large already out of the populated areas in 13 or 14 of Iraq's 18 provinces," adding security duties in 11 provinces were under Iraqi control and another two were "expected to shift in the month of October."

At least three explosions in which at least 32 people died coincided with Gates's visit. One blast occurred at a Ramadan feast in Diyala province and two happened in central Baghdad.

© 2008 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
Marijuana decriminalized in Philadelphia Marijuana decriminalized in Philadelphia
2
Pope Francis condemns 'hostile inflexibility' within the church Pope Francis condemns 'hostile inflexibility' within the church
3
No, Banksy hasn't been arrested, nor his identity revealed No, Banksy hasn't been arrested, nor his identity revealed
4
Early completion of refit of Italian aircraft carrier Early completion of refit of Italian aircraft carrier
5
Eric Frein manhunt refocuses after possible sighting Eric Frein manhunt refocuses after possible sighting
Trending News
Around the Web
x
Feedback