Tuesday, June 16, 2009
British forces hand over Basra HQ building to Iraqis
Some of the last British forces based in Basra handed back the former headquarters building of the to the authorities at Basra International Airport.
The building, a former hotel sited near the main airport terminal, was handed over to the airport's director, Mr Ameer at a ceremony yesterday as part of the ongoing withdrawal of the British forces.
The building was an unfinished shell when coalition forces arrived in 2003 but the UK has since carried out millions of dollars worth of work to make the building habitable.
British Forces are now leaving Iraq in accordance with the UK's security agreement with the Iraqi government. The Airport authorities will now decide on any future use of the building
The building has been the work place of thousands of coalition personnel over the past six years as well as civilian staff from the Ministry of Defence, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and UK Department for International Development. This building represented the very heart of the UK's efforts to make Iraq, and particularly Basra, a safer and more prosperous place.