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Last Updated: Friday, 28 April 2006, 13:17 GMT 14:17 UK
Thirty die in Iraqi city battle
Man injured in one of the attacks in Baquba
Several people were also injured in the fighting in Baquba
At least 21 Iraqi insurgents and seven soldiers have been killed in fighting in the city of Baquba during which at least 43 insurgents were captured.

Baquba was put under curfew after the attacks on Thursday on police stations and checkpoints in the city and surrounding province of Diyala.

At least two civilians also died in the fighting, US and Iraqi sources said.

The attacks raged for "hours", an Iraqi police official said, estimating that between 400 and 500 rebels took part.

In other developments:

  • an alleged senior member of the al-Qaeda in Iraq militant group, Humadi al-Takhi, is killed along with two other militants when US and Iraqi troops raid a house in Samarra

  • a bomb attack on a patrol in Falluja kills at least two Iraqi policemen

  • the US military confirms the death of a US soldier in a roadside bombing on Thursday evening in Baghdad

'Wedding party cover'

In Baquba, insurgents used mortars, rocket-propelled grenades and small arms to attack five police checkpoints, a police station and an Iraqi army headquarters, Iraqi and US sources said.

Diyala Province governor Rad Rasheed al-Mulla said the attackers had planned to seize control of Baquba's south, west and south-west entrances.

The city, 60km (35 miles) north of Baghdad, has seen frequent insurgent attacks in recent months.

In one of Thursday's attacks, gunmen reportedly pulled up at a checkpoint posing as a wedding party in a convoy of vehicles, one of which was decorated with ribbons and flowers.

They then sprayed the checkpoint with bullets, a security source told AFP news agency.




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