Updated at 12:05 a.m. EDT, April 20, 2008
At least 95 Iraqis were killed and 183 were wounded in the latest attacks. Many were killed or injured in Sadr City where fighting between the Mahdi army and security forces continues. Two American soldiers were killed in separate incidents. Meahwhile, the Australians are delaying their withdrawal, while civil war is breaking out between Sunni factions.
Police in Sadr City reported receiving 12 bodies and treating 71 people for injuries during overnight clashes between the Mahdi army and security forces. Hospital officials said they treated of 130 people for injuries. Late in the day, rockets hit the Sadr Hospital, but the number of casualties was not reported. Health officials did report that three women were killed and 40 others were wounded in today’s clashes.
In Baghdad, two gunmen were also killed during an airstrike. A mortar killed one person last night on al-Nidhal Street. During security operations, 12 Iraqi soldiers were killed and 39 were wounded, while 12 gunmen were killed and 18 more were detained. Gunmen wounded and Interior Ministry official. One dead body was found.
The heaviest fighting in weeks was reported in Basra, only a day after Iraqi security forces harassed Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr’s followers. No casualties were reported, but government forces claim to have captured Hayaniya, which is a Mahdi army stronghold; however, the militia observed a unilateral cease-fire and offered no resistance. A spokesman from Sadr’s office called the humanitarian situation in the neighborhood, “tragic.”
Sixteen decapitated bodies were found in a state of decomposition in Diwaniyah.
In Mosul, a roadside bomb killed two and wounded 12 others. Two dumped bodies were found. Gunmen wounded three people during a drive-by shooting. Also, an IED killed one civilian and wounded five more this afternoon.
A firefight near Nassiriya in Suq al-Shiyoukh left 20 gunmen, four security personnel and one civilian dead. One gunman and two security personnel were injured.
A body was found in Mussayab.
Eight suspects were arrested in Karbala.
In Arbil, a journalist was killed reportedly over a family dispute.
Also, 40 families were who were forcibly relocated from Khalis have returned home.
A child was killed and three others were wounded during a roadside bombing in Baquba.
Twenty-two suspects were detained in Mosul and Baiji.
The official spokesman for Ninewah security operations survived an assassination attempt unscathed.
Compiled by Margaret Griffis