Politics

Iraqis jubilantly celebrate U.S. troop withdrawal.

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U.S. forces handed over formal control of Iraq’s major cities today (it is already Tuesday in Iraq), “a defining step toward ending the U.S. combat role in the country.” In celebration, Iraqis launched fireworks and “thousands attended a party in a park [in Baghdad] where singers performed patriotic songs. … Loudspeakers at police stations and military checkpoints played recordings of similar tunes throughout the day, as Iraqi military vehicles decorated with flowers and national flags patrolled the capital.” Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who had called the withdrawal a “great victory,” declared June 30 a public holiday. Some scenes of celebration around the country:

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