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Low Key Ceremony Marks Official End to Iraq War (Video)

The mission flag is cased at the end of mission ceremony in Baghdad, Iraq December 15, 2011
Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo / Department of Defense
The mission flag is cased at the end of mission ceremony in Baghdad, Iraq December 15, 2011

The war in Iraq is officially over. Today in Baghdad Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey helped mark the end of the United States military's mission in Iraq with a low key ceremony.

Dempsey told troops gathered for the ceremony:

Then the U.S. commander in Iraq, Army Gen. Lloyd Austin, ordered troops to encase the U.S. Forces Iraq colors. While this action brought an official close to the almost nine year war, the Pentagon reports there are still roughly 5,500 servicemembers still in Iraq. They have until December 31 to leave the country.

There were 144,000 troops in Iraq when President Barack Obama took office.

Here's a report from Great Britain's Telegraph TV showing the Baghdad ceremony that symbolized the war's end: