Thursday, April 30, 2009

UK combat operations end in Iraq

UK combat operations end in Iraq

Photo: A Rifleman makes his last combat operational patrol (Gett Images via BBC)

British troops are to formally end combat operations in Iraq marking the end of a six-year military campaign.

A memorial service has taken place in Basra for the 179 British personnel who have died during the conflict.

The focus was a memorial wall featuring the names of the 234 British and foreign troops and civilians who lost their lives on the UK-led operation in Iraq.

Army chaplain Father Pascal Hanrahan, who opened the ceremony, said: "Today is about remembrance and thanksgiving. We remember by name and acknowledge the ultimate sacrifice paid by the 234 men and women who lost their lives during Operation Telic."

The last post was sounded by a bugler and prayers were said. There was also a roar overhead as a lone Tornado aircraft conducted a fly-past in tribute.

UK combat operations ended as 20 Armoured Brigade took part in a flag-lowering ceremony with a US brigade. In London, Prime Minister Gordon Brown said a new chapter in relations between the two countries had begun. (BBC News In Pictures)

See BBC News report 30 April 2009:
UK combat operations end in Iraq

UK combat operations end in Iraq

Photos: The names of those who died during the UK's Operation Telic were read out at the memorial service, which also honoured Italian, Dutch, Danish, American and Romanian troops who died. (Photo by Press Association via BBC)

UK combat operations end in Iraq

Photo: Getty Images via BBC.

See more pictures at BBC News In Pictures 30 April 2009.

No comments: