April 18, 2006 -- U.S. troops took part in heavy fighting around Iraq on April 17.
U.S. troops provided support after about 50 insurgents attacked Iraqi forces in a mostly Sunni district of Baghdad early in the day. The U.S. military said the fighting lasted seven hours, and resulted in the death of five rebels. One member of the Iraqi forces was wounded. There were no reported U.S. casualties.
Later, Marines fought insurgents in Al-Ramadi. No casualties were reported in that fighting.
Elsewhere, officials said gunmen had killed the brother of top Iraqi Sunni leader, Salih al-Mutlak.
Also, the bodies of 12 shooting victims, some showing signs of torture, were found in different areas of Baghdad on April 17.
On the political front, talks between leaders of the Sunni, Shi'ite, and Kurdish parties on forming a unity government showed no sign of a breakthrough.
(compiled from agency reports)