Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Kidnapped Brit begs Blair

Baghdad - The kidnapped British director of Care International made another plea on Wednesday urging Britain to withdraw troops from Iraq and asked for the aid organization to close its offices in Iraq, in a video aired on Al-Jazeera television. Hassan, who also holds Iraqi and Irish citizenship, was kidnapped on her way to work in Baghdad a week ago. No group has claimed responsibility.Britain began redeploying some 800 troops toward the Baghdad area on Wednesday, in a move aimed at freeing up US forces for an assault on insurgents areas north and west of the capital.,,2-10-1460_1611772,00.html

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Experts ponder missing Iraq weapons

Revelations that nearly 400 tonnes of conventional explosives have gone missing in Iraq have experts wondering what other weapons might be in jeopardy of falling into insurgent or terrorist hands.By all accounts, Iraq is studded with weapons depots - many in places where US-led forces are preoccupied with their fiercest fighting.Troubling questions about what other weapons might be vulnerable to looting have arisen since the UN nuclear agency's warning this week that 342 tonnes of non-nuclear explosives disappeared from the former Al-Qaqaa military installation south of Baghdad.The explosives included HMX and RDX, key components in plastic explosives, which insurgents in Iraq have used to deadly effect in months of bloody car bomb attacks on the US-led multinational force."Given the number of arms, and the number of caches and the extent of militarisation of Iraq, it was impossible to provide 100 per cent of security for 100 per cent of the sites," said Adam Ereli, the US State Department's deputy spokesman.,5744,11201056%255E1702,00.html

Monday, October 25, 2004

Bombings across Iraq kill at least 8, including American GI, Estonian soldier

Bombings struck four coalition and Iraqi military convoys and a provincial government office Monday, killing at least eight people, including an American soldier and an Estonian trooper in the Baghdad area. On Monday, a roadside bomb in western Baghdad killed one U.S. soldier and wounded five, the U.S. military said. An Estonian soldier died when a roadside bomb exploded at a market just outside Baghdad as his patrol went by, the Estonian military said. Five other Estonian soldiers were wounded. A car bomb also targeted an Australian military convoy 350 metres from their country's embassy in Baghdad, killing three Iraqi civilians and wounding nine people, including three Australian soldiers who suffered minor injuries, Iraqi and coalition officials said. Officials said this had been the first direct attack on Australian military units.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Bodies of about 50 Iraqi soldiers discovered in eastern Iraq

The bodies of about 50 unarmed Iraqi soldiers -- many killed execution style with gunshots to the back of the head -- were found on a remote road in eastern Iraq, victims of an ambush as they were heading home on leave after basic training, Iraqi authorities said Sunday. The Iraqi soldiers, who had recently finished a training course, were on their way home when they were ambushed and killed about sundown Saturday on a road about 95 miles east of Baghdad near the Iranian border, said Interior Ministry spokesman Adnan Abdul-Rahman.Lt. Ali Jawad Kadhim, from the nearby Mandali police station, said all the victims had been shot in the back of the head. Kadhim, who said he took photos of the bodies, said all had their hands were crossed behind their heads. Also,A State Department security officer was killed during a mortar or rocket attack against a U.S. base near Baghdad International Airport, the U.S. Embassy announced. A U.S. soldier was also injured in the attack on Camp Victory, the headquarters of the U.S.-led coalition's ground forces command.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Iraq: 26 killed on horrific day of violence

Suicide bombers killed at least 22 members of Iraq's fledgling security forces yesterday amid a spate of insurgent attacks across the country that also left six US servicemen injured, four civilians dead and a sabotaged pipeline that was still blazing at nightfall. Yesterday's outbreak of violence began with a suicide car bombing outside a US marine base 142 miles west of Baghdad. The blast hit an Iraqi police post at the base, killing 16 security men and injuring up to 40 others. No US servicemen or women were hurt. Then another suicide bomber blew up his vehicle near a checkpoint manned by Iraqi National Guards in the village of Ishaqi, near Samarra, north of Baghdad. Four guards were killed, and six wounded in the attack. Two other policemen were killed by a roadside bomb in Samarra. Near the northern city of Mosul, insurgents killed two Turkish truck drivers and wounded two others in an attack on a convoy. And on the highway leading to Baghdad airport, six US soldiers were wounded when their armoured vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb. Insurgents also fired two mortar rounds in central Baghdad, killing two civilians and wounding one, witnesses said.

Friday, October 22, 2004

18 Killed in Iraq Violence

Eighteen people including two girls were killed in Iraq in separate incidents late Thursday and Friday.US Marines clashed with several groups of militants, exchanging gunfire and artillery, on the outskirts of Fallujah, the US command said on Friday. Fresh fighting erupted about 4:00pm when militants from within the city fired small arms and mortars at Marines conducting security operations near the city, a military statement said. The Marines countered “with substantial and proportionate ground fire”.Earlier on Thursday night, US aircraft and artillery pounded suspected weapons warehouses in Fallujah, leaving seven people dead and three others wounded, hospital sources said. The US army confirmed that two raids were carried out in the area on Thursday. In other violence, a car bomb exploded near a police station in Ishaqi, about 80 km north of Baghdad, wounding two policemen, police said. Two prisoners escaped after the blast.Nine militants were killed and three wounded in a gun battle on Friday between US and Iraqi forces and militants in the town of Buhruz, northeast of Baghdad, said the US military. Two US soldiers and one Iraqi were wounded in a joint US-Iraqi operation on Friday against suspected militants near a mosque in Mosul, said the US military.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Iraq Attacks Kill Five People; CARE Worker Kidnapped

Four Iraqis and a U.S. contractor were killed and 87 people injured in two mortar attacks on security posts in Iraq, the U.S. military said. In Baghdad, CARE International's country director was kidnapped. Mortar rounds attacked an Iraqi National Guard base near Taji, north of Baghdad.In the second attack, a mortar hit a U.S. Army compound in central Baghdad, leaving the contractor dead and seven people injured, including a soldier. Also, The kidnapping of the CARE official, Iraqi national Margaret Hassan, happened at 7:30 a.m. local time, the humanitarian organization said in a statement. Hassan, who is British born and in her 60s, has provided humanitarian relief in Iraq for more than 25 years, the Associated Press reported. Al Jazeera showed pictures of Hassan displaying her identity cards. She was abducted by an unidentified group, the Qatar-based television network said.