You call that a handover?

Hey don’t forget to tell the babysitter she’s in charge now. Whens she says lights out, she means it! Don’t give her any lip or she’ll… um, nothing.

Iraq Formally Returns to Self-Rule Two Days Early:

The United States handed sovereignty to an interim Iraqi government two days earlier than expected Monday, aiming to forestall guerrilla attacks with a secretive ceremony formally ending 14 months of occupation.

Iraq’s outgoing U.S. governor Paul Bremer handed a letter to Iraq leaders sealing the formal transfer of powers before immediately flying out of the country.

The low-key ceremony was over before it was announced and came as a surprise to ordinary Iraqis. Its hurried and furtive nature appeared to reflect fears that guerrillas could stage a spectacular attack on the scheduled date of June 30.

…Although Allawi’s government will have “full sovereignty,” according to a U.N. Security Council resolution earlier this month, there are important constraints on its powers.

It is barred from making long-term policy decisions and will not have control over more than 160,000 foreign troops who will remain in Iraq. The government has the right to ask them to leave, but has made clear it has no intention of doing so.

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