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Iraqi President Calls For Regional Conference

9 July 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Iraqi President Jalal Talabani today proposed a regional conference on fighting violence in the country.

He made the proposal while expressing his condolences to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on the killing of Cairo's envoy to Baghdad. According to Talabani's office, Mubarak supported the proposal.

The Iraq Al-Qaeda group has claimed responsibility for the killing of the Egyptian diplomat.

Among incidents of violence reported in Iraq, 11 people -- including two soldiers and a police officer -- were shot dead in the northern city of Mosul in separate attacks on 8 July.

Police said a family of four was shot dead today in the northern town of Baiji when gunmen stormed their house at dawn. A husband, wife, and their 2- and 5-year-old children were killed.

Meanwhile, U.S. Marines said today they have launched a new counter-insurgency operation, the latest in a series of sweeps designed to root out militant bases in Iraq's Euphrates Valley.