09/28/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

U.S. To Hand Over Security In Anbar To The Iraqis

BAGHDAD -- The American military will hand over responsibility for the security of Anbar Province, once a stronghold of the Sunni insurgency and one of the most violent regions in Iraq, to the Iraqi government as early as Monday, Iraqi and American officials said Wednesday.

The transfer would be a milestone for American officials, who have said that reduced violence in Anbar, a western province, shows that a partnership there with the local forces known as Awakening Councils has been successful.

The transfer would also be the first in a province bordering Baghdad, where there has been intense sectarian conflict. Other provinces that have been shifted to Iraqi control have been in the less troublesome south and in the northern Kurdish region.

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