16 Dec 2008

Tongan troops return home from Iraq

12:10 pm on 16 December 2008

Tonga's last 55 soldiers to be deployed in Iraq'a capital Baghdad for the Operation Iraq Freedom II Peacekeeping Mission will arrive home today.

Lieutenant Colonel Siamelie Latu of the Tonga Defence Services told Matangi Tonga online that the troops are pulling back from Iraq for good as agreed to with the United States.

The soldiers who were deployed to Iraq in August were based at Camp Victory in Baghdad, the headquarters of the Multinational Force, at the Al Faw Palace.

Meanwhile, the Americans and the Iraqi Government have signed a Status of Forces Agreement, which commits Washington to withdraw its troops by December 2011.