US troops to hand over Babel province on Thursday - governor

Other News Materials 21 October 2008 17:37 (UTC +04:00)

The US-led multi-national forces are to hand over the security of the province of Babel to the Iraqi government in two days' time, Babel governor Salem Saleh al-Moslemawy said Tuesday, reported dpa.

In remarks reported by the Iraqi al-Buratha news agency, al- Moslemawy told a press conference that the ceremonial handover would take place on Thursday.

Babel, south of Baghdad, would become the 12th of Iraq's 18 provinces to be handed over by the US military to Iraqi control.

Babel, whose capital is Hilla, is a religiously and ethnically mixed province. In the norhter, the Sunnis have their so-called "triangle of death" stronghold, while Shiites make up most of the population in the south.