AUGUSTA — Eight Iraqi women were greeted in the Maine State House as they examined the role of women in government.

The women, who include public officials and a university professor, met today with Gov. John Baldacci and were recognized during visits to the Senate and House of Representatives. The presiding officers of both chambers are women: Senate President Libby Mitchell and House Speaker Hannah Pingree.

The Iraqi women visited Maine through the U.S. State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program. They are all in the United States for the first time.