Peshmerga Women Steal the Show at Iraqi Handover Ceremonies

7 of 18 Iraqi Provinces now control the security and governmental operations in their region.
How many Americans do you suppose know that?

Three Kurdish provinces were handed over to Iraqis this week in grand ceremonies.
But it was the infamous Peshmerga women who stole the show at the handover celebrations…

Female pershmerga, the Kurdish security force, show off some moves during a hand-over ceremony from US forces to the Kurdish regional government in the northern city of Arbil. Reponsibility for security in Iraq’s three northern provinces — Sulaimaniyah, Arbil and Dohuk — was given to the Kurdish regional government today.(AFP/Ahmad al-Rubaye)

Female Pershmerga, the Kurdish security force, march during a handover ceremony from U.S. forces to the Kurdish regional government in the northern city of Irbil, a city in the Kurdish controlled north 350 kilometers (217 miles) north of Baghdad, Wednesday, May 30, 2007. The Kurdish regional government took the responsibility for security in the northern provinces of Iraq on Wednesday. (AP Photo/Ahmad Al Rubaye)



It was another great day on the road to a free and democratic Iraq as three more provinces were turned over to Iraqi officials this week.
The AFP reported:

ARBIL, Iraq (AFP) – In a blaze of pomp showcasing Kurdish military muscle, US forces handed over responsibility for security in Iraq’s three northern provinces to the Kurdish regional government on Wednesday…

Sulaimaniyah, Arbil and Dohuk provinces are ruled by the Kurdish Regional Government, which has its own executive and ministries and has been spared much of the unrest wracking the rest of Iraq.

“Today is another success in the process of rebuilding Iraq,” Kurdish Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani said at a ceremony in his capital, Arbil.

The handover was followed by a parade of Kurdish soldiers, including an all-female martial arts display.

“This is the result of the experience of 16 years,” he said referring to Iraqi Kurdistan’s history of de facto independence since the 1991 Gulf War weakened Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s grip on the mountainous north.

Kurdish security officers, or peshmerga, stand next to a portrait of Mustafa Barazani, founder of the peshmerga, during a handover ceremony in the northern city of Arbil May 30, 2007. U.S. forces handed over security control of the three northern Kurdish provinces of Dohuk, Sulaimaniya and Arbil to Iraq on Wednesday. REUTERS/Ahmad Al-Rubaye/Pool (IRAQ)

Iraqi-American Haider Ajina reported this earlier this week:

Kurdistan in its three provinces of Arbil, Sulaimaniya and Dehuck covers 14673.4 sq mi of Iraqi territory and a population of 3.8 million Iraqis. This represents 3.4% of Iraq’s territory and 15.2% of the population. In the south the provinces of Maysan, Nejaf, Muthena & Dhi Qar are already under Iraqi provincial control. By the time the hand over of the Kurdish provinces is complete seven out of eighteen Iraqi provinces will be under provincial control. The provinces under full Iraqi control, after the Kurdish provinces are handed over, will be a total of 35.4% of Iraq’s territory and 29% of the population.

All this has been achieved, in a country with little experience in democracy and the rule of law in its recent history and after 30 years of tyrannical rule, and only 4 short years since the liberation, and combating terrorists trying to destabilize an elected government.

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