Updated at 8:00 p.m. EST, Mar. 2, 2009
At least 10 Iraqis were killed and 32 others were wounded in the latest attacks. A U.S. was soldier was killed in combat. Meanwhile, Chemical Ali has received a third death sentence, but two Iranians could soon see their freedom. Also, the fate of millions of orphans could spell trouble for Iraq’s fragile security.
A notorious cousin of Saddam Hussein known as “Chemical Ali” was sentenced to death for the third time. He stood accused of murdering Shi’ites in 1999. Previously, he was found guilty and sentenced to death for crackdowns against the Kurds and Shi’ites in the 1980s and 1990s, which left thousands dead. Although Chemical Ali, whose real name is Ali Hassan al-Majeed, should have been executed shortly after the previous findings, political wrangling has kept him alive through this trial. The court sentenced other men to execution or life terms, but former Deputy Prime Minister Tareq Aziz was acquitted. Aziz faces another trial.
Iran’s state radio reported that the U.S. is ready to free two Iranians held in Iraq. U.S. authorities claimed no knowledge of the release. The pair had been part of a group of five Iranians arrested in Arbil in 2007. They were accused of supporting Shi’ite militias, but Iran claims the men were diplomats.
A bomb planted on a bicycle left near Khalis mosque killed five people and wounded 24 others.
A roadside bomb killed two Iraqi soldiers and wounded three others in Balad Ruz.
In Baghdad, two wanted gunmen were arrested. At least 42 other suspects were detained as well. A number of explosions heard in Adhamiya were blamed on police who were safely detonating explosives; no casualties were reported.
In Mosul, the mayor’s son was wounded in a drive-by shooting. A roadside bomb targeting a police patrol wounded three civilians. Gunmen shot dead a man. Also, 88 Christian families returned to their homes. They were among the thousands who fled the area last autumn when attacks against Christians surged.
Just west of Mosul, a bomb two men were planting went off accidentally, killing the two men.
Police in Amara arrested 11 members of a gang believed to specialize in funding terror operations.
Three suspects were arrested in Rashad.
Three former candidates were arrested in Muthanna province for forging their educational documents. Police are searching for six others.
A U.S. Hummer struck a roadside bomb near Hilla and was set ablaze. No casualties were reported.
Sixteen suspects were arrested in Basra.
In Karbala, 66 suspects were detained.
Compiled by Margaret Griffis