American forces killed eight suspects and captured 26, including an alleged Shiite militia leader, in two days of raids across Iraq, the U.S. military said Friday. The eight were killed Thursday and Friday in separate raids targeting al-Qaeda in Iraq across the country's central and northern regions, the military said. At least 22 others were detained in the operations, it added, according to the AP.
The militia leader was detained along with three other suspects late Thursday in the Mashru area south of Baghdad, a U.S. statement said. The military conveyed the man was believed to be a "special groups" leader.
The military identified the main suspect in Thursday's raid as "a deputy for special groups criminal elements in Wasit province," and a close "associate of several senior-level criminal element leaders involved in attacks" on U.S. and Iraqi forces. He and three others were captured without incident, the military said.
In other incidents, Iraqi police said a roadside bomb killed three awakening council members and injured eight others Thursday south of Baghdad. The attack occurred along a road leading into Madain, a predominantly Sunni town about 14 miles southeast of Baghdad.