For America, the war in Iraq would end in 2011 when it would pull out all its troops from the country, US President Barack Obama said on Monday.
"We will remove all our troops from Iraq by the end of 2011. For America, the Iraq war will end," Obama said in his address to the Veterans of Foreign Wars Convention in Phoenix, Arizona. The United States will begin removing its combat brigades from Iraq later this year.
"In Iraq, after more than six years, we took an important step forward in June. We transferred control of all cities and towns to Iraq's security forces," he said.
"The transition to full Iraqi responsibility for their own security is now underway. This progress is a testament to all those who have served in Iraq, both uniformed and civilian. And our nation owes these Americans -- and all who have given their lives -- a profound debt of gratitude," he said, amidst applause.
The US President said, "Now, as Iraqis take control of their destiny, they will be tested and targeted. Those who seek to sow sectarian division will attempt more senseless bombings and more killing of innocents."
"As we move forward, the Iraqi people must know that the US will keep its commitments. The American people must know that we will move forward with our strategy," Obama said.
By moving forward in Iraq, the US is able to refocus on the war against al Qaeda and its extremist allies in Afghanistan and Pakistan, he asserted.