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Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki (right) with Muqtada al-Sadr in April (epa)
August 8, 2006 -- Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki today criticized a joint U.S.-Iraqi raid in the Baghdad suburb of Al-Sadr City on August 6.
Al-Maliki said he did not authorize the assault, and described it as "unjustified."
The U.S. military said the operation targeted a death squad.
The raid sparked a gun battle with militiamen loyal to the radical Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, whose group is part of al-Maliki's coalition. At least three civilians were killed in the battle.