Iraq: Seven US troops, 15 civilians killed in blasts, clashes
An attack on a joint U.S.-Iraqi patrol northwest of Baghdad left 15 civilians, eight "insurgents" and a U.S. Marine dead from a roadside bomb and the fire exchange that followed, a U.S. military statement said Sunday.
The attack started with an improvised explosive device detonating next to the Marine's vehicle in the town of Haditha, 140 miles northwest of Baghdad, on Saturday, the U.S. command said, according to the AP.
Fifteen Iraqi civilians died by the blast, which was followed by an attack with small arms fire, the statement added. "Iraqi army soldiers and Marines returned fire killing eight insurgents and wounding another," the statement said.
Five American soldiers died in two other roadside bombings near Beiji, 155 miles north of Baghdad, the U.S. command said. Five others were injured.
Another soldier died in a U.S. hospital in Germany of injuries suffered two days ago when his vehicle was deliberately rammed by an Iraqi car near Beiji, the U.S. command said Saturday.
Also on Saturday, a suicide bomber detonated his car in a crowd of Shiite mourners north of Baghdad, killing at least 50 people. The bomb went off late in the afternoon as mourners offered condolences to Raad Majid, head of the municipal council in the village of Abu Saida, over the death of his uncle.
In the northern city of Mosul Iraqi sources said police and U.S. soldiers surrounded a house before dawn Saturday after reports that al-Qaeda members were inside, said Brig. Said Ahmed al-Jubouri, a Mosul police spokesman.
As a fierce gunbattle broke out, three al Qaeda activists detonated explosives and killed themselves to avoid capture. Five more died fighting, while four police officers also were killed.
In Baghdad, the U.S. command confirmed the firefight and said 11 U.S. soldiers, nine Iraqi army troops and one policeman were wounded.