June 30, 2006 in Nation/World

Coalition forces clash with insurgents

Kim Gamel Associated Press

Bin Laden tape

Osama bin Laden praised slain al-Qaida in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in a new videotape posted on the Web today. The message shows an old still photo of bin Laden. A voice resembling his narrates a tribute to al-Zarqawi, killed in a June 7 airstrike.

Associated Press

BAGHDAD, Iraq – Iraqi and U.S.-led coalition forces clashed with insurgents during a raid on a village northeast of Baghdad, killing three terrorism suspects and wounding three others, the military said today.

The American and Iraqi soldiers were called in after Iraqi police came under fire while trying to enter the village of Daliqiya near Baqouba, 35 miles northeast of Baghdad.

The coalition forces, backed by air support, chased the insurgents into a house, engaging in a fierce gunbattle that left three fighters dead and three wounded, the military said, adding that four other suspects were detained.

Iraq’s bloodshed continued today, with police saying they found three bodies bound and shot in different areas of Baghdad. The grisly discoveries came a day after at least 46 deaths from violence were reported across the country, including nine bullet-riddled bodies pulled from rivers.

Maj. Gen. William Caldwell, spokesman for U.S. forces in Iraq, acknowledged Iraqi civilians were suffering most from the insurgency, accounting for 70 percent of all deaths and injuries.

But he said the Americans had gained momentum in their fight against al-Qaida in Iraq after killing its leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and have devoted a lot of resources to targeting his successor, Abu Ayyub al-Masri.

© Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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