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Coalition Forces Attacked Najaf

Posted April. 27, 2004 21:13,   


The coalition spokesman said yesterday that the coalition led by the U.S. forces battled with Shiite insurgents on Monday night in the city of Najaf, killing 43 gunmen and destroying an anti-aircraft system belonging to the insurgents. The fight came one day before the deadline of the coalition’s request to the insurgents to abandon heavy weapons.

Before the battle, the U.S. troops and the armed insurgents who support Shiite cleric al-Sadr, fought in Kufa, 10km northeast of Najaf. In the southern city of Diwaniya, Spanish troops were attacked by insurgents while vacating from the base.

Earlier Monday, one U.S. soldier was killed when U.S. troops came under a heavy insurgent attack in Fallujah, and two U.S. soldiers lost their lives by an explosion of a building in Baghdad. As al-Sadr threatened to mobilize suicide troops if attacked, there are concerns over conflicts and terror across Iraq where the cease-fire has been remained unstable.

Some foreign news agencies including DPA in Germany reported that the U.S. is pursuing the passage of a U.N. resolution that justifies the occupation after handing over sovereignty to Iraq on June 30. The resolution the U.S. is seeking reportedly contains dismantling of the weapons of mass destruction monitoring organization of the U.N. and voluntarily drawing up a report about WMD in Iraq.

Relocation of troops has been emerged as a new concern as Spanish and other forces began withdrawal. Thailand also said that its troops might withdraw from Iraq after transferring sovereignty to Iraq. The British government said it is consulting with the U.S. government about how to respond to the withdrawal of some coalition forces.

Dong-Keun Keum gold@donga.com