Italian troops based in Iraq's Nassiriya have finished their supervising phase during which they looked after the assumption of security duties by Iraqi forces and will now complete their planned withdrawal, local media reported Thursday.
Italy handed over responsibility for security in the Dhi Qar province to Iraqi forces in September but remained to supervise the transition and offer assistance if requested by local authorities.
No such requests were made during the following month, the report said.
The withdrawal of the some 1,600 remaining Italian troops is expected to be completed before the end of the year.
Italy, which did not take part in the U.S.-led war on Iraq, at one point deployed 3,200 troops in Iraq, making it the fourth largest contingent after the United States, Britain and South Korea.