21 July 2004 -- Another U.S. soldier has been killed in Iraq, bringing to 900 the number of U.S. military dead since the beginning of military operations in March 2003.
A U.S. military spokesman said the soldier was killed when a roadside bomb exploded while the soldier was on patrol just after midnight in Duluiyah -- some 70 kilometers north of Baghdad.
Yesterday, two U.S. Marines and two U.S. soldiers were killed in action in Anbar Province, a Sunni-dominated area west of Baghdad.
AP reported that before the latest five deaths, the Pentagon official count of the dead had stood at 895.
U.S. troops also battled insurgents late yesterday near Samarra in northern Iraq. Four Iraqis were reported killed and five wounded in that fighting.
Also today, the Iraqi foreign minister is due in Cairo for security talks with counterparts from neighboring countries. Hoshyar Zebari is due to meet with foreign ministers from Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Kuwait, Iran, Syria, Jordan, and host Egypt, which does not border Iraq, but is a regional power.
Zebari is expected to tell them their countries aren't doing enough to help stop violence in Iraq and may even be causing trouble there.
Yesterday, Iraqi Defense Minister Hazim Sha'lan al-Khuza'i was quoted in the London-based "Al-Sharq al-Awsat" newspaper as saying Iraq has evidence neighboring states are interfering in its affairs. He singled out Iran, but gave no details.
Officials from Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia have said it is difficult to control their long, porous borders with Iraq.
Also attending today's talks are UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi and EU representative Javier Solana.