3 U.S. Soldiers Killed In Accidents

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The U.S. military says two of its soldiers in Iraq died when their vehicle rolled onto its side north of Baghdad.

A third American soldier died in a road accident in neighboring Kuwait.

The two soldiers died Wednesday in Iraq's Salahuddin province. The military said in a statement released Thursday that another soldier and an interpreter also were injured.

Their deaths raised the American death toll in Iraq in April to 36, the highest rate of death for troops there since September, when 65 Americans were killed, according to an Associated Press tally.

The military says the highway accident in Kuwait involved a single vehicle and that another soldier was injured.

The cause of both crashes were under investigation.

Kuwait is a major logistics base for American and other coalition troops serving in neighboring Iraq.

In Other Developments:

  • Britain's foreign secretary held talks Thursday with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. The British Embassy confirmed that Foreign Secretary David Miliband had arrived on a previously unannounced visit but refused to release any other information due to security concerns. Britain has about 4,500 troops in Iraq, most of them based at an airport camp near the southern city of Basra. Britain suspended plans to withdraw about 1,500 troops this spring after fighting broke out last month between Iraqi forces and Shiite militiamen.
  • Five people died and 28 were wounded early Thursday in Baghdad's embattled Sadr City district, a stronghold of the Mahdi Army militia of anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. The figures came from a police officer who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the media.
  • Another eight people were killed and two wounded during fighting in the capital's Husseiniyah area, another base of Shiite militants. The figures came from a hospital official who spoke on condition of anonymity out of safety concerns.

    The fighting broke out after Iraqi troops moved last month to regain control of Basra - capital of the country's vast oil industry - from militias. U.S. and British troops have helped the Iraqis gain control of the city, although scattered attacks still occur.

    The fighting, however, spread to Baghdad, with its substantial Shiite population and strong militia presence.

    Thursday's clashes came a day after a top American general urged al-Sadr to rein in his fighters.

    "We certainly hope that Sadr will choose the road of peace and responsibility," said Lt. Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III, who commands day-to-day operations in Iraq.