AR RAMADI, Iraq -- In a show of support for the Al Anbar province by the Iraqi Transitional Government, the Iraqi Prime Minister and U.S. Ambassador to Iraq made a visit to the provincial capital of Ar Ramadi and to the nearby city of Fallujah, Jan. 15.
This marked the first visit by an Iraqi prime minister to Al Anbar since the liberation of Iraq.
During the visit, Prime Minister Ibrahim Ja’afari met with the al Anbar Governor, Ma’amoun Sami Rashid, Coalition Forces and members of the Anbar Security Council, to discuss the future of Al Anbar. This discussion included Anbar’s participation in the Iraqi Security Forces, combating terrorism throughout the province, the role of the Coalition Forces and Al Anbar’s participation in the new Iraqi government.
“This is independence – having the voices of the many heard and recognized by all so dialogue and actions can be taken,” Ja’afari said about the Iraqi government.
Ja’afari announced that the Iraqi Government authorized $75 million (USD) for reconstruction projects in Al Anbar.
The Commanding General of Multi-National Forces – Iraq, Gen. George W. Casey, and the Commanding General of 2nd Marine Division, Maj. Gen. Richard A. Huck, also attended the meeting at the Provincial Government Center.
The prime minister, ambassador, and Gen. Casey praised the accomplishments that have been made throughout the region and said that much more still needed to be done.
“We’re seeing Iraqis take increasing responsibility for Iraq,” said Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad. “We remain determined – for as long as it takes – in the fight against terrorism.”