Updated at 7:40 p.m. EDT, April 30, 2008
Although more bodies are stacking up in the aftermath of his security crackdown, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki continues to threaten the Mahdi army. At least 71 Iraqis were killed and another 155 were wounded in the latest round of violence. Five American soldiers were killed in separate events.
Two U.S. servicemembers were killed when they came across an IED in Baghdad. Also, one American soldier was killed in an IED attack in Baghdad this morning. Also, the DOD reported that one U.S. soldier died of injuries unrelated to combat. An exlosion in Ninewah province left another American soldier dead. April was the deadliest month for U.S. troops since September.
Prime Minister al-Maliki set forth several conditions that the Mahdi army will likely not accept before he is willing to end a failed security crackdown that many believe was designed to sideline Sadrists ahead of elections. The crackdown, which began in Basra in March, triggered a backlash that left hundreds dead and thousands injured, including American soldiers. U.S. authorities report that at least 925 Iraqis were killed aand 2605 were wounded so far. The initial fighting ended in most cities except Sadr City, but the militias remain in control of Basra.
In Sadr City, hospital authorities reported as many as 35 dead and 129 wounded in the last 24 hours.
In Baghdad, four people were found dead. Mortars wounded four people. In Hay al-Amil, mortars injured six people. U.S. forces killed 10 gunmen. Two people were wounded when mortars fell in Bayaa. In Amil, mortars injured six civilians. U.S. forces killed two people in Abu Dsheer. A roadside bomb in Ur left no casualties. No casualties were reported after mortars fell in the Green Zone. Increase activity by gunmen in Amil and Mashtal forced the closing of schools.
A roadside bomb in Hawija blasted an Awakening Council (Sahwa) patrol, killing two and wounding two others.
Gunmen killed a woman during a home invasion in Kut.
The tortured and shot bodies of a man and woman were discovered in Tikrit.
A roadside bomb injured six women in Buhriz.
A Sahwa fighter was wounded accidently by
A raid lead to the arrest of 35 suspects in Tuz Khormato.
Four suspects were arrested near Arbil.
In Diyala province, 112 detainees were freed after establishing their innocence. Also, 14 Iraqi and six foreign al-Qaeda suspects were killed.
Ninewah province released 113 detainees under the General Amnesty Law.
Compiled by Margaret Griffis