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Last Updated: Monday, 4 February 2008, 07:08 GMT
US admits killing Iraqi civilians
The US military has admitted accidentally killing nine Iraqi civilians, including a child, during raids south of Baghdad.

In a statement, it said the civilian deaths occurred on Saturday near the town of Iskandariya, 50km (30 miles) from the Iraqi capital.

It added that three more civilians, two of them children, were wounded "as coalition forces pursued al-Qaeda".

Witnesses say 20 people were killed in an US air strike in the area.

They said the dead included 17 members of the same family.

In a statement, the US military said: "Shortly after the incident, coalition forces leaders met with a sheikh representing the citizens of the local area.

"The incident is under investigation. We offer our condolences to the families of those who were killed in this incident, and we mourn the loss of innocent civilian life."

It gave no further details.

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