At least eight Iraqis were killed and 37 more were wounded in the latest
attacks. The lion's share of the casualties occurred during an attack on a shrine
in Balad. No Coalition casualties were reported anywhere in Iraq. The Eid al-Fitr
holiday continues, so there may be fewer reports than normal coming out of the
country. In other news, U.S. and Iraqi casualties were
down from the same period last September.
The U.S. military handed
over control of the Sunni-led Awakening Councils (Sahwa) to Baghdad today.
The emergence of these Sahwa groups was a major factor in the reduction of violence
over the last 18 months, as the Sunni fighters turned their focus away from U.S.
troops towards al-Qaeda members. The handover of Sunni fighters to the Shi'ite
led government is not a simple matter as there is still mistrust on both sides.
At least four
people were killed and 29 more were wounded during a car bombing near a shrine
In Baghdad, four
people were injured during a bombing in the Jihad neighborhood.
Clashes in Mandali left three
gunmen dead and four policemen wounded.
Authorities in Diwaniya
executed a man found guilty
of murdering several people. Another 42 death sentences have been handed out for
the same charges. Meanwhile, security forces deployed 10,000 men during the Eid.
A spokesman for Dhi Qar province again denied
rumors that the police chief was being transferred. Separately, 20 support councils
will be formed after the Eid
U.S. forces cleared
40 detainees of all wrongdoing and released them in Anbar province.
by Margaret Griffis