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Five U.S. Soldiers Killed In Central Iraq


The U.S. military says five U.S. soldiers were killed in central Iraq today.

The military in a brief statement did not give further details, but unconfirmed local media reports said they were killed by rockets fired into a U.S. military base on the outskirts of Baghdad.

The deaths bring to 4,459 the number of American soldiers killed in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion to oust Saddam Hussein in 2003, according to an independent count.

The United States officially ended combat operations in Iraq last August, leaving some 45,000 soldiers in Iraq charged with training and assisting Iraq's security forces in fighting insurgents.

In other violence, 17 people were killed when a suicide attacker exploded a car bomb in Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit.

The explosion in Tikrit occurred at the entrance to a fortified compound of presidential palaces used by Hussein, which now houses several security offices.

Local officials say many of the victims were security officers.

The attack came three days after at least 21 people were killed in apparently coordinated attacks in Tikrit on June 3.

In Baghdad, attacks in the mainly Sunni northern neighborhood of Adhamiyah today killed a soldier and two anti-Al-Qaeda militiamen.

The Interior Ministry said a car bomb also exploded in Baghdad's eastern district of Palestine street, killing one and wounding 10.

compiled from agency reports
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