At least 32 killed in Kufa battles as US marine killed near Fallujah
At least 32 people died in overnight battles between U.S. forces and fighters loyal to Muqtada al-Sadr in his stronghold of Kufa, but many fighters have returned to their homes after abandoning the center of another holy Shiite city, Karbala, witnesses and hospital officials said Sunday.
An occupation spokesman said all those slain were fighters loyal to cleric Moqtada Sadr, whose fighters have been locked in a deadly uprising against foreign occupation troops for more than a month.
The casualties in Kufa took place when U.S. tanks and
troops moved for the first time into the city, where
al-Sadr routinely delivers a sermon at Friday prayers to
thousands of supporters. The incursion was part of an
effort to gradually weaken al-Sadr's fighters.
The dead and 54 others who were wounded were taken to two different hospitals in the city, doctors said. There were no reports of U.S. casualties.
In another incident, a US marine was killed near the city of Fallujah, west of Baghdad, the US military said Sunday.
Elsewhere, unknown attackers fired two Katyusha rockets early Sunday at a building of the Northern Oil Company but caused no damage or casualties, an Iraqi official said.
The rockets, fired in the city's Arafa area, missed the
building and exploded in an open field near a small
refinery, according to police chief Torhan Abdel Rahman
Yusuf. He said three people were taken into custody for
questioning in the attack. (Albawaba.com)
© 2004 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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