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  Baghdad airport 'attacked'
Updated 03 April 2003, 22.17
On the road to Baghdad
US troops have attacked the main airport in Baghdad, reports say.

An American journalist with troops say they are in control of the airport, 20 kms (12 miles) south-west of the city.

He also says they have faced little fighting back from Iraqi soldiers.

Other US troops are said to be less than seven kilometres (four miles) away from the centre.

There are also reports that dozens of people were killed in an village near the airport in a bomb attack.

Important fight

There were more blasts in Baghdad on Thursday

The fight for control of the capital Baghdad is going to be vital in the war.

The airport is especially important for the coalition forces to control in case Saddam Hussein wants to use it to escape the country.

BBC journalists in Baghdad say most of the city is in darkness because of power cuts - the first time since war broke out.

But US officials say have not targetted electricity supplies.

Fighting has also broken out between US soldiers and Iraqi Republican Guards south of Baghdad.

They are some of Saddam Hussein's best trained fighters.

Guards in Baghdad

But others could be withdrawing into the city to get ready for the coalition attack.

A British Paratrooper prepares for patrol in southern Iraq

It would be much easier for the Republican Guard to fight from inside Baghdad as they know it better.

The coalition prefer to fight outside the capital, because there are less civilians around who accidentally may be hurt in the fighting.

Other main points:

  • Iraq satellite TV claim to show Saddam meeting his politicians

  • US officials are looking into two possible incidents of "friendly fire": a Patriot missile may have hit an FA-18 Hornet plane

  • The other involves ground forces who may have been involved in an incident with an F-15 Strike Eagle which left a US soldier dead

  • British forces have been fighting with Iraqis outside Basra in the south of Iraq.


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