The text of this agreement can be accessed georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2007/11/20071126-11.html (the « declaration of principle »). A historical perspective on U.S. operations in Iraq and issues related to Iraqi governance and security can be found in the report CRS RL31339, Iraq: Post-Saddam Governance and Security, by [author name scrubbed] and CRS Report RL33793, Iraq: Regional Outlook and U.S. Policy, coordinated by [author name scrubbed]. 2001: Agreement on the overflight, transit and presence of US armed forces, personnel and contractors on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria to support Operation Unchangeable Freedom (agreement reached before Bulgaria`s accession to NATO) The most frequently dealt with issue in a SOFA is the legal protection against prosecution of US personnel while present in a foreign country. The agreement defines the contracting party that is able to assert criminal and/or civil jurisdiction. In other words, the agreement defines how national civil and criminal laws apply to U.S. personnel while serving in a foreign country. The United States has agreements in which it has exclusive jurisdiction, but the common agreement leads to a shared jurisdiction between the United States and the signatory country. Exclusive jurisdiction is where the United States retains the right to exercise all criminal and disciplinary jurisdictions in the event of a violation of the laws of the foreign nation while the person is present in that country. Shared jurisdiction occurs when each party to the agreement retains exclusive jurisdiction for certain criminal offences, but also allows the United States to require the host country to remove jurisdiction in favor of the United States, which exercises criminal and disciplinary jurisdiction. The right to exercise responsibility for U.S. personnel is not limited to the time a person is in a military facility.
It can also cover the people of the facility. The right to jurisdiction may give rise to full immunity from the laws of the host country while the person is in that country. With the exception of the multilateral SOFA between the countries of the United States Organization and the Northern Treaty (NATO), a SOFA is specific to a single country and in the form of an executive agreement.4 The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defence jointly identify the need for a SOFA with a given country and negotiate the terms of the agreement.