28 die as US launches operation to ease sectarian tension in Iraq
A series of bombings in Iraq on Tuesday resulted in a death-toll of 28 following the launch of a major American operation to secure Baghdad and lessen Shiite-Sunni sectarian violence.
Baghdad security forces said three people, including a woman and a child, were killed, along with an American soldier and two Iraqi journalists during the course of the raid, according to the AP.
US military sources maintained that the new operation was aimed at "individuals involved in punishment and torture cell activities."
US soldiers reportedly captured three people in the raid.
Earlier in the day at least ten people were killed and 18 others wounded when a suicide truck bomber in the town of Samarra in northern Iraq struck the provincial headquarters of an Iraqi police commando force.
The bomber reportedly drove a truck filled with produce through a wire barricade into a building housing the offices of the Interior Ministry's police commandos.
Ten commandos were killed and eight injured. Ten civilians were also wounded in the attack.
PM condemns US, Iraqi attack
Tuesday's deaths came one day after approximately 20 Iraqis, including three civilians, were killed in Baghdad when US and Iraqi forces raided a Shiite stronghold there.
"I was very angered and pained," said Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki, as he condemned the offensive, explaining that he had prohibited such an operation as the nation was in the process of "a national reconciliation process."
Maliki went on to point out that the troops had used disproportionate force in the attack.
"That's why I have vowed that this won't happen again," Maliki added, "I am so sorry for what happened."
Families of each of the ten killedwill reportedly receive $1,360, while those injured will recieve $700 according to a statement by Maliki's adviser, Mohammed Salman.
- Iraq: Many killed in attacks despite efforts to ease sectarian tensions
- Iraq: Shiite, Sunni organizations vow to ease tensions; Two US troops, British soldier killed
- Iraqi PM vows to review security strategy as sectarian death toll rises
- Iraq: Scores die in blasts, US raid and sectarian violence; At least 18 abducted
- Oil price rises amid Iraq-Kuwait tension