Statement of General Odierno, Department of Defense News Briefing from Iraq, June 30, 2009. Available at www.mnf-iraq.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=27118&Itemid=131. The withdrawal agreement signed on 17 November 2008 is considered a reference in the broader strategic agreement and, although it is titled differently, it is commonly referred to as SOFA. As mentioned above, there are no formal requirements for the content, detail or length of a SOFA, but many agreements have the same basic framework, and that is no different. Rules and procedures relating to issues such as the carrying of weapons, the wearing of uniforms, entry and exit from Iraq, taxes, customs and receivables, including operational concerns, will be discussed in the agreement. While there are many similarities between the latter and other U.S. SOFS, most do not have an expiration date, but this agreement expires on December 31, 2011. In addition, there are significant discrepancies with the clauses that are most often found in a traditional sofa, including in areas such as civil and criminal jurisdiction, authorizing military operations, setting a timetable for withdrawal and establishing committees to implement the agreement. The Senate`s reservations with regard to NATO SOFA contain four conditions: (1) the provisions of the criminal jurisdiction of Article VII of the agreement do not set a precedent for future agreements; 2. When a member of the service is to be brought to justice by the authorities of a host state, the commander of the U.S. military checks the laws of the receiving state in that state, referring to the procedural safeguards of the U.S. Constitution; (3) If the captain believes that there is a risk that the service member will not be protected because the accused would not have constitutional rights in the United States, the captain asks the host state to enact its jurisdiction; and (4), a representative of the United States; 29 On November 26, 2007, U.S. President George W.
Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Kamel Al-Maliki signed a declaration of principles on a long-term cooperative and friendship relationship between the Republic of Iraq and the United States of America. Under the declaration, the parties committed to “start as soon as possible with the aim of reaching agreements between the two governments on political, cultural, economic and security issues by 31 July 2008.” In particular, the statement indicates the intention of the parties to conclude an agreement that would require the United States to provide security guarantees to Iraq, to arm and train the Iraqi security forces, and to oppose Al Qaeda and other terrorist units on Iraqi territory. After the agreement was reached, more than 9,000 Iraqis gathered to protest in the eastern suburbs of Baghdad, Sadr City. Protesters burned an American flag and held banners saying, “No, no to the agreement.”  “We condemn and reject the agreement, just as we condemn any injustice,” Sheikh Hassan al-Husseini said immediately after the vote during weekly Friday prayers in Baghdad.  After the adoption of the agreement, Iraqi theologian, political leader and militiaman Muqtada al-Sadr called for three days of peaceful protests and mourning.  The great Ajatollah Ali Husseini al-Sistani expressed reservations about the ratified version of the pact and stated that the Iraqi government did not have the power to control the transfer of US forces to and from Iraq, no control of deliveries, and that the Covenant granted US troops immunity from prosecution in Iraqi courts. He said that Iraqi rule in the country was not complete as long as American troops were present, but that the Iraqi people would eventually judge the pact by referendum.  Sistani considers the parts of the agreement a “mystery” and said that the pact offered “no guarantee” that Iraq would regain sovereignty.
 There are reports that prior to the transfer of sovereignty and the establishment of the Iraqi transitional government, the United States attempted to work with the Iraqi Governing Council.