GIs Hurt In Series Of Iraq Attacks

A US soldier flashes a thumbs up sign to his colleague as he guards the site of an explosion at the foot of Jadriya Bridge in Baghdad, Iraq Tuesday July 8, 2003. No immediate report of casualties is available. The US troops are under almost daily attacks in Baghdad and neighboring Sunni areas where ousted ruler Saddam Hussein, a Sunni Muslim, is believed to still muster some influence.
AP
Three Iraqis were killed and seven U.S. soldiers injured Tuesday in attacks throughout Iraq, as a voice attributed to Saddam Hussein called again for more violence.

Witnesses said three Iraqis — including a 13-year-old boy — were killed following a grenade attack on a police station in a Baghdad suburb. Witnesses told Associated Press Television News that those killed when troops returned fire were not among those who attacked the police station.

Insurgents dropped a homemade bomb from a bridge onto a passing U.S. military convoy in Baghdad, while another military vehicle struck a land mine in the capital. Two soldiers were injured in each incident, said Sgt. Patrick Compton.

In Kirkuk, 175 miles north of the capital, assailants fired a rocket-propelled grenade at a military convoy, injuring three servicemen. The patrol returned fire, but there was no word of Iraqi casualties or arrests.

Late Monday, insurgents fired mortars at a base near Balad, 55 miles north of the capital, the military said. U.S. forces subsequently caught 12 of the suspected attackers.

The violence came after a deadly 24-hour period that saw three U.S. troops killed in Baghdad — two in shootings and one in a bomb attack.

In other developments:

  • CBS' David Martin reports the U.S. has captured an Iraqi information officer who could answer the question whether Iraq was involved in the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. The officer, Ammed Al Ani is alleged to have met lead 9/ll hijacker Mohammed Atta in Prague in April of 2001, six months before the attacks.
  • Two Middle Eastern television channels broadcast what they say is a new audio tape by ousted Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, in which he tells Iraqis, "it is your duty to expel the aggressor invaders from our country."
  • The White House acknowledged Monday that President Bush's State of the Union address in January was incorrect in stating that Iraq had recently sought significant quantities of uranium in Africa.
  • Prime Minister Tony Blair, facing persistent questions about his government's use of intelligence material, told lawmakers Tuesday that he had made a valid case for military action in Iraq.
  • The U.S.-led provisional authority announced a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest of anyone responsible for the killing of a member of coalition forces or the Iraqi police.
  • U.S. forces and Iraqi police had arrested Sabah Mirza, a former Saddam bodyguard, on June 26, the U.S. administration announced.
  • Leaders of seven key Iraqi political groups gave their assent Monday to the formation of a governing council that will name interim leaders for Iraqi government ministries and help chart the way to writing a constitution and elections.
  • The Pentagon expects a review of the U.S. military force in Iraq to be completed in the next week or so. But a spokesman says it's "highly unlikely" that will lead to a recommendation for additional forces.

    There now are some 145,000 Americans and 12,000 coalition forces including British, Poles and others in Iraq. Up to 20,000 international soldiers will flow into Iraq to help, beginning later this month and concluding with deployments at the end of September, the Pentagon has said.

    Retiring war commander Gen. Tommy Franks told ABC on Monday that no extra troops are needed in Iraq.

    Despite the worsening guerrilla warfare, the U.S.-led administration called two new city councils to order — one in the southern Shiite city of Najaf and the other in the chaotic capital.

    The councils — which join other municipal governments with limited powers emerging around Iraq — are expected to act as a proving ground for national leaders, as the United States tries to lay the ground for an eventual transition to democracy.

    In the Iraqi capital Monday, a polyglot city council met for the first time, bringing together a wide range of members — from tribal leaders in headdresses to women in smart business suits. The role of the 37-member advisory body — which has no spending authority — is to advise the U.S.-led administration.

    "It's probably the most important day since April 9th, when the coalition came and liberated you from the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein," Bremer said. "Today marks the resumption of the democratic system in Baghdad, which hasn't been here in 30 years."

    The U.S. administration screened council members for ties to Saddam's Baath party and nullified the election of "four or five" Baathists, said Army Lt. Col. Joe Rice, a council adviser.

    Once the country's constitution is written and a census and voter registrations finished, nationwide elections will be held, "at which point the coalition's work will be done," Bremer said.

    City councils have been emerging around Iraq, with councils in Mosul and Basra, among other cities. Fallujah and other cities have mayors.

    On Monday, a 22-member city council took its seats in the southern city of Najaf. The council's only female member, Dr. Jenan Yasser al-Obeidi, dressed from head to toe in black, sat quietly and took notes during the session.

    There were still setbacks to the postwar planning. In the south, the U.S.-appointed governor of the holy Shiite Muslim city of Karbala resigned Tuesday after allegations of financial improprieties, the U.S. military governor said.

    Ali Kammouna, 31, had been the governor of Karbala since May. He was the first postwar governor to be approved by Marines, who have been occupying the southern city since late April.

    Kammouna was the second governor in the predominantly Shiite south to lose his job in the past two weeks. The governor of Najaf, another Shiite holy city, was arrested and removed from his post after he was charged with corruption and kidnapping.