British troops in Iraq
Britain's eight-year presence in Iraq has formally come to an end with the Royal Navy completing its training of local troops, reports Sky News.
Most UK forces withdrew from the country in July 2009 but dozens of Navy officers remained at the port of Umm Qasr in the south.
They continued to train Iraqi soldiers to defend their territorial waters and offshore infrastructure.
A total of 1,800 Iraqis were trained on 50 different courses, including small arms and oil platform maintenance, the Ministry of Defence said.
Operation Telic, the controversial mission to join America in removing dictator Saddam Hussein, began in April 2003.
In total, 179 British personnel lost their lives in Iraq over the eight years of UK military presence.
Only a handful of NATO personnel are expected to stay in the country, while a handful of workers will staff the British embassy in Baghdad.
"Royal Navy personnel have used their formidable skills and expertise to bring about a transformation in Iraq's naval force," Defence Secretary Liam Fox said.
But as the last British boots leave Iraq, former Foreign Secretary David Miliband criticised the allied operation to rebuild the country.
He said that Western forces had failed to "develop a proper strategy for peace" - and violence continued long after Saddam was removed from power.
"Iraq obviously divided not only our country, but divided the whole world really.
"It proved how much easier it is to win wars than to win the peace and I think that is the sort of lesson that we have got to learn."
He went on: "Six, seven, eight months after the fall of Saddam Hussein, the sort of Sunni-Shia conflict that came to mark the Iraq episode, hundreds of thousands of deaths, hadn't really started, it was still in the balance.
"I am afraid the failure of the Western forces to develop a proper strategy for peace, not a strategy for war, has held back the country."
There was "still history to be made in Iraq", he said, adding a successful government would send "a message" to the rest of the Arab world.
But in a sign the country was still a volatile place, the end of the mission came amid a series of bombings in and around the capital, resulting in the deaths of at least 16 people.
Up to 10 police officers were among those killed in the explosions, which happened at the start of the working week and mostly within Shiite neighbourhoods.