At least one U.S. soldier killed in clash west of Baghdad; Witnesses: U.S. soldiers injured in Fallujah
U.S. occupation forces backed by tanks and helicopters battled Iraqi resistance fighters Monday near the town of Khaldiyah, west of Baghdad. According to witnesses, the U.S. forces have suffered heavy casualties after two convoys were attacked with bombs and rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs). U.S. officials confirmed one soldier was killed and another one was wounded.
Sporadic, heavy gunfire rattled farming communities north of the town. Residents said the fighting started at midmorning and continued in the early afternoon, with U.S. M1A2 tanks firing 120-millimeter cannons as helicopters strafed farm houses with 50-millimeter machine gun fire, The AP reported.
Hours after the battle began, four U.S. armored personnel carriers arrived as reinforcements, reports said. A jet fighter could be heard in the area. Eight Humvees carrying U.S. troops also could be seen heading toward the battle.
Witnesses said they saw several US soldiers wounded, some seriously, but there was no official confirmation.
Elsewhere, a U.S. convoy was attacked with at least one bomb on Monday in the town of Fallujah, Iraqi police and U.S. officials said, but they could not confirm witness reports of several casualties, some serious.
Police officer Ismail Ibrahim, cited by AFP, said the convoy of three or four vehicles was attacked at about 10:00 am (local time) in Fallujah, some 50 kilometers west of Baghdad and that "the Americans opened fire blindly."
Witnesses said they saw several U.S. soldiers injured, some seriously, but there was no official confirmation. (Albawaba.com)
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