Prince Charles Visits British Troops in Iraq
By Donna Miles
Prince Charles paid a surprise visit to Iraq to express gratitude
and praise to the British troops deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom
for maintaining security in southern Iraq and supporting the war
officials in Washington said the prince arrived at the Al- Sarraji
Palace compound in Basra — once Saddam Hussein’s palace
and now an operational headquarters for British troops —
for the first visit by a member of the British royal family to
Iraq since the former dictator’s ouster from power.
British soldiers are serving in Iraq, with 4,500 of them based
in Basra, forming part of the 20th Armoured Brigade.
a Chinook helicopter, the Prince of Wales — dressed in desert
camouflage and wearing a beret — mingled with soldiers from the
Royal Regiment of Wales, the Parachute Regiment’s 2nd Battalion,
and the Army Air Corps regiments and thanked them for their service
of the world doesn’t have much chance unless their armed force can
learn a lot from your experience," he was quoted as telling
the troops, "not only in the military, but in the hearts and
Prince Charles (R) is presented with a customized shirt
at the Saudi Sports Federation complex for special needs,
on the outskirts of Riyadh in Saudi Arabia. The Prince is
seen on an official trip to the Middle East. The following
day he made a surprise vist to give praise to British troops
Stillwell / Reuters
also presented the Wilkinson Sword of Peace to the 2nd Battalion,
Parachute Regiment for its peacekeeping efforts following the
conflict in Afghanistan.
enormously impressed by what you managed to achieve," the
prince told the soldiers. "I hope you feel there is some
sense of reward for the difference you managed to make for so
many people who live in Kabul."
He also lauded
the soldiers for setting up a football match in Afghanistan, saying
British troops "have a great way of conducting that all-important
speech, officials said, the soldiers jumped to attention in a
semicircle around the prince and gave three loud cheers, raising
their berets in the air with each call.
also met with Iraqi officials to discuss political and economic
issues in post-war Iraq. Among those he visited were Judge Wail
Abl al-Latif, provincial governor and member of the Iraqi Governing
Council, and Gabriel Qassab, the Catholic archbishop of Iraq.