IA Lt. Col. Hreena Dhia Habeeb, a Basrah native and the executive officer of Camp Ur's military occupational skill qualification school, returns a salute from one of his honor graduates during a graduation ceremony Sept. 4.

CONTINGENCY OPERATING BASE ADDER, Iraq - An Iraqi Army training center in southern Iraq graduated almost 200 new Soldiers Sept. 4. The new troops are set to fill positions in the 10th and 14th IA Divisions.

"I give credit to my officers for training me into being a better Soldier," said Pvt. Talal Maki, a recent graduate of Camp Ur's truck driving school. Maki is scheduled to join the 39th Brigade, located in Samawah. "They prepared me and my fellow troops to fight and defend our country."

The Iraqi Army is putting better trained troops into its operational divisions in the southern provinces to help rebuild their country.

"We make disciplined Soldiers and that will make a more disciplined Iraq," said IA Capt. Jawad Hameed, commander of the advanced training courses.

"I hope to see the training center grow," he said. "With America as our friends, we can make Iraq's future very bright."

Camp Ur, a base operated by Iraqis with assistance from the U.S. Army, is the training ground for transportation and logistical skills. Upon graduation, the Iraqi troops move out to their next duty assignment in the Iraqi Army.

"We are here to partner with and professionalize the Iraqi Security Forces, specifically the 10th IA Division, which operates in the same area as the Long Knives," said Col. Philip Battaglia, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division commander.

Building a bright future in Iraq's southern provinces means increasing the security level in the region, said Battaglia.

"In working to enable the government and the local economic capacity, the first thing we must do is provide security," he explained, "I think the ISF are doing well in providing security."

Page last updated Thu September 18th, 2008 at 17:53