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20 Iraqis, 5 US soldiers killed in Iraq’s violence

Written by kumaran   // June 6, 2011   // Comments Off

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Violence in Baghdad and central Iraq killed 20 Iraqis and wounded 40 others while the U.S. military announced the death of five of its soldiers on Monday, several months before the proposed departure of all U.S. troops from the country.

Monday was one of the deadliest days for the U.S. soldiers in Iraq as the U.S. military announced in a statement the killing of five of its soldiers in central Iraq, without giving further details about how or where exactly they were killed. However, an Iraqi security source told reporters that at least three Katyusha rockets were fired at dawn against a joint Iraqi-U. S. military base in Baladiyat district, eastern Baghdad, without reports about casualties.

The base is a former site of internal security directorate under Saddam Hussein’s regime. Its location is close to Baghdad’s Shiite bastion of Sadr City district, the main stronghold of Mahdi Army militia, loyal to radical Shiite cleric of Moqtada al-Sadr. The U.S. military did not confirm the rocket barrage on its base in Baladiyat yet. The death toll of U.S. soldiers, who have been killed in Iraq since the war broke out in 2003, rose to about 4,459, according to media count based on Pentagon figures.

U.S. troops in Iraq had been reduced to below 47,000 soldiers until the end of April. Washington said that the remaining U.S. troops in Iraq are conducting support and training missions. U.S. military forces are to pull out completely from Iraq by the end of 2011, according to the security pact named Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), which was signed late in 2008 between Baghdad and Washington.

Also in the day, violence hit Tikrit, the capital city of the predominantly Sunni Arab province of Salahudin, when a suicide car bomber struck in the morning Iraqi security forces at a checkpoint at the entrance of the presidential compound of the former president Saddam Hussien.

The powerful blast killed nine soldiers and two policemen, along with wounding 19 people, most of them were security members, according to a source from Salahudin’s Operations Command, who spoke to Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

 


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