ABU GHRAIB, Iraq - The 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division transferred authority of Joint Coordination Center Abu Ghraib to their Iraqi Police partners during a ceremony conducted here Tuesday.

Leaders from the 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 4th SBCT, 2nd Inf. Div., the Abu Ghraib Police district and the Iraq Ministry of Interior participated in the ceremony, which concluded with the signing of documents, officially transferring control of the JCC to the Iraqis.

Since arriving in Iraq last fall, Soldiers from 1st Bn. 38th Inf. Reg. had maintained a 24-hour presence at the JCC; planning operations and conducting missions alongside their Iraqi Police partners to improve security in the area, to include the national elections March 7. In total, more than 100 combined patrols have been enabled during the past six months.

"Even though we are turning over the JCC today, we are still going to remain partners," said Lt. Col John Leffers, commander of 1st Bn. 38th Inf. Reg., adding that this transfer is another step toward the responsible reduction of U.S. forces in Iraq while ensuring that the two nations remain strong strategic partners.

"The transfer strongly reinforces the confidence of the Government of Iraq and the people of Abu Ghraib in their [Iraqi Police]," said Leffers. "They're ready to lead."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16