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Obama Returns to US After 1st Overseas Trip


U.S. President Barack Obama has returned to the United States after his first overseas trip since taking office in January.

On Tuesday, Mr. Obama made an unannounced trip to Iraq and visited Camp Victory, a U.S. military compound on the outskirts of Baghdad.

He offered cheering military personnel at the base his appreciation and support, and told them the next year and a-half could be critical for the U.S. military operation in Iraq. He said it is time for the Iraqis to take responsibility for their country.

President Obama met at Camp Victory with the top U.S. commander in Iraq, General Ray Odierno, and with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and President Jalal Talabani.

Mr. Obama has announced plans to remove most U.S. combat forces from Iraq by the end of 2010.

Previously, during a two-day trip to Turkey, Mr. Obama pledged to rebuild relations between the United States and the Islamic world.

The president met with Turkish college students, addressed parliament and visited a cultural center in Istanbul, where he called for a greater understanding among nations. He said the United States, like every other nation, has made mistakes.

In addition to Iraq and Turkey, Mr. Obama's first overseas trip included stops at the G-20 summit last week in London and a NATO meeting on the French-German border.

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