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Roadside Bomb Kills Marines In Iraq

3 August 2005 -- Fourteen U.S. Marines were killed today when their patrol vehicle hit a roadside bomb in Iraq's Euphrates River valley.

It was the single deadliest roadside bombing of U.S. troops in Iraq.

The Marines have been fighting in western Iraq to seal a major Syrian border infiltration route for foreign fighters. They launched a series of operations in the region in May and June in hopes of pacifying the area so that Iraqi military and civilian forces could assume effective control.

Speaking in Texas, U.S. President George W. Bush said the best way to honor the dead is to complete the mission. Bush rejected any early U.S. withdrawal from Iraq.

Journalist, Translator Found Dead
In another development, an American freelance journalist was found dead in the southern Iraqi city of Al-Basrah. Steven Vincent of New York was shot multiple times hours after he and his Iraqi translator were abducted yesterday evening at gunpoint. The translator was wounded.

According to the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, at least 46 journalists and 20 media-support workers have been killed covering the war in Iraq since March 2003.

(news agencies)

For the latest news and analysis on Iraq, see RFE/RL's webpage on "The New Iraq".