29 April 2004 -- The U.S. military said today that Marines and former Iraqi generals reached an agreement during negotiations to pull U.S. forces away from Al-Fallujah.
But details of the deal remain sketchy and new air strikes on the besieged city as well as gun battles were reported later in the day.
Lieutenant Colonel Brennan Byrne initially said troops will leave a southern zone of the city tomorrow and hand over security to a new Iraqi force, headed by a former Iraqi Army officer.
It was unclear who the members of the new force are or what influence they would have over the guerrillas inside the city west of Baghdad.
Byrne later said the agreement was "tentative," while Pentagon spokesman Larry Di Rita said he was not aware of a deal.
Overall today, 10 U.S. soldiers were killed in three separate attacks while at least six Iraqi civilians were killed in several incidents. In addition, seven Iraqi police were killed by gunmen in the northern city of Mosul. (Agencies)