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U.S. troops patrol Baghdad on 8 July 9 July 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Insurgents in Iraq attacked the main oil refinery in the Iraqi capital Baghdad, as assaults against key infrastructure appear to be on the rise.

Some 150 firefighters battled a blaze at the Dura refinery for more than two hours after a pipeline was struck by mortar fire late yesterday.

Dura supplies Baghdad with most of its petrol and fuels a key power plant.

The attack came just days after militants bombed a water pipeline, leaving half the city without water at the height of summer.

The U.S. military said on 9 July 22 suspected insurgents have been detained so far in a new counter insurgency operation launched on 7 July near the restive city of Al-Fallujah.

A roadside bomb exploded today near an Iraqi army convoy in Al-Fallujah, causing a number of casualties.

Also on 9 July, sports officials said Ali Shakir, the head of Iraq's karate union, was kidnapped south of Baghdad on 7 July.

(dpa/AP/AFP)

See also:

Iraqi Minister Has Ambitious Plans For Oil Sector

For RFE/RL's full coverage of developments in Iraq, see "The New Iraq"
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