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Mar 16th, 2009


4 Troops Killed in Afghanistan; violence escalating

Image: Damaged vehicle
An Afghan police officer surveys the damage after an explosion on the outskirts of Kabul on Sunday, March 14, 2009. (Photo credit: Rafiq Maqbool / AP)

March 15, 2009

KABUL — A roadside bomb in eastern Afghanistan killed four NATO troops Sunday, as bombings and clashes elsewhere in the country killed 14 other people, officials said.

NATO did not disclose the victims’ nationalities or the exact location of the blast. Most of the troops in the country’s east are American, though other countries also participate in operations there.

The Taliban regularly use roadside bombs against Afghan and foreign troops. Last year the number of such attacks rose by 30 percent, according to NATO figures. …

Separately, a suicide bomber on foot in the capital of Kabul killed two Afghan civilians, said Lt. Gen. Abdul Rahman Rahman, Kabul’s police chief.

The bomber — who had been targeting a NATO patrol — also wounded 14 other civilians, the Interior Ministry said in a statement. No foreign troops were wounded or killed, the statement said. …

The Taliban-led insurgency has recently made a comeback the last three years after what appeared to be an initial defeat following the U.S. invasion in 2001. …


Suicide Attack on Afghan Police Kills 11

March 16, 2009

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — A suicide bomber in a police uniform detonated explosives he was carrying inside a police headquarters in southern Afghanistan on Monday, killing 11 people and wounding 29 others, the Interior Ministry said.

The bombing followed a surge in violence in Afghanistan over the weekend that led to the deaths of eight foreign troops, including four Americans.

The bomber Monday set off his explosives after slipping inside the main police building in Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province, while the police were exercising, said Asadullah Sherzad, the provincial police chief. …

The lightly armed police force has suffered greatly in Taliban attacks, with more than 800 officers killed in 2008 alone. …

Attacks in Helmand over the weekend killed three British troops, while a roadside bomb in the east Sunday killed four U.S. troops. A French soldier was also killed in a clash on Saturday, making the weekend one of the deadliest two-day periods for international troops in weeks. …



Maliki says U.S. troop withdrawals must be done with Iraq’s approval (AP, March 15, 2009) — U.S. troops will not be removed from areas of Iraq that are not completely secure or where there is a high probability that attacks could resume after the Americans leave, Iraq’s prime minister said Sunday. Nouri al-Maliki said in an interview with The Associated Press that he had told President Barack Obama and other top U.S. officials that any withdrawals “must be done with our approval” and in coordination with the Iraqi government. …

Iranian drone shot down inside Iraq (, March 16, 2009) — A U.S. military spokesman confirmed on Monday that U.S. forces shot down an unmanned Iranian aircraft in Iraqi airspace last month. “Coalition multi-role jet fighters shot down an unmanned Iranian (aircraft) on Feb. 25, approximately 60 miles northeast of Baghdad.” …


Security Developments in Iraq

Following are security developments in Iraq on Sunday, March 16, 2009, as reported by Reuters.

NINEVEH PROVINCE – U.S. forces accidentally shot dead a 12-year old girl while firing at a vehicle that accelerated towards them in Iraq’s northern Nineveh province, the U.S. military said in a statement. She was behind the vehicle, it said, adding that the incident was still under investigation.

BAGHDAD – One U.S. soldier died from injuries sustained while on patrol in Baghdad, the U.S. military said.

MOSUL – A civilian woman was killed and an Iraqi security forces official was wounded on Sunday during a raid by Iraqi and U.S. forces in Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, the U.S. military said in a statement.

BAGHDAD – A roadside bomb struck a U.S.-backed neighborhood patrol, wounding three people, including one guard, in the Doura district of southern Baghdad, police said.

BAGHDAD – A grenade explosion killed a militant and wounded three civilians in the Mansour district of central Baghdad on Sunday evening, police said.

KIRKUK – Gunmen threw a grenade inside a car on Sunday evening, seriously wounding a doctor in central Kirkuk, 155 miles north of Baghdad, police said.

MOSUL – Gunmen clashed with Iraqi forces and killed a soldier in western Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad on Sunday evening, police said.

MOSUL – A bomb attached to a car seriously wounded a civilian in northern Mosul on Sunday evening, police said.

Following are security developments in Iraq on Sunday, March 15, 2009, as reported by Reuters.

DAQUQ – Police said they found the bodies of three men with gunshot wounds in the town of Daquq, 125 miles north of Baghdad.

MOSUL – Gunmen in a car opened fire and killed an off-duty lieutenant colonel in central Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, police said.

BAGHDAD – A bomb attached to a car killed Abdul-Latif Salih, a petroleum expert, in the Ghazaliya district of western Baghdad, police said.

BAGHDAD – A bomb attached to a car killed the brother of the U.S.-backed neighborhood patrol leader in northern Baghdad on Saturday, police said. Four members of his family were wounded in the blast.

BAGHDAD – Three people were wounded by a roadside bomb on Saturday in the Dawoudi district of western Baghdad, police said.

BAGHDAD – Two Iraqi soldiers were wounded on Saturday when a roadside bomb exploded near an Iraqi army patrol in the Mansour district of western Baghdad, police said.

Following are security developments in Iraq on Saturday, March 14, 2009, as reported by Reuters.

MOSUL – Gunmen shot dead an off-duty policewoman in a market in central Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, police said.

BAGHDAD – A Katyusha rocket hit a storage unit in an oil refinery in Baghdad’s southern Doura district, police said, causing a fire. Local guards managed to put it out.

BAQUBA – U.S.-backed Iraqi forces arrested 15 suspected militants in a new security crackdown in Baquba, 40 miles northeast of Baghdad, police said. The operation will continue throughout northeastern Diyala province, an area where al Qaeda still retains influence, they said.


U.S. Military Deaths in Iraq

As of Monday, March 16, 2009, at least 4,259 members of the U.S. military had died in the Iraq war since it began in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count.

U.S. Troop Casualties in Iraq

Latest identifications:

Army Sgt. Jeffrey A. Reed, 23, Chesterfield, Va., died March 2, 2009 in Balad, Iraq, of wounds suffered when his vehicle was struck by a grenade in Taji, Iraq. He was assigned to the 411th Military Police Company, 720th Military Police Battalion, 89th Military Police Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.

Army Spc. Jessica Y. Sarandrea, 22, Miami, Fla., died March 3, 2009 in Mosul, Iraq, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked her forward operating base with mortar fire. She was assigned to the 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.

Army 1st Lt. Daniel B. Hyde, 24, Modesto, Calif., died March 7, 2009 in Samarra after an explosive device struck his unit vehicle in Tikrit. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii.

Marine Lance Cpl. Patrick A. Malone, 21, Ocala, Fla., died March 10, 2009 as a result of a non-hostile incident in Saqlawiyah, Anbar province, Iraq. He was assigned to 2nd Tank Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.


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