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Pre-Referendum Attacks Continue In Iraq

10 October 2005 -- Insurgents have launched a new salvo of attacks five days ahead of a crucial constitutional referendum.

A suicide car bomber today killed three policemen and three civilians in Iraq's capital Baghdad.

In other violence, Iraqi police say that four Iraqi soldiers were killed and 10 wounded in overnight attacks near the northern city of Kirkuk.

Five mortar shells were fired at a hotel today in the southern city of Al-Hillah where a U.S. regional embassy office is based, with one round hitting the building. No casualties were reported.

Gunmen also opened fire on a convoy of cars carrying members of an Arab League delegation that is visiting Iraq. No one was hurt.

The latest attacks came as Shi'ite and Kurdish officials continued to negotiate with Sunni Arab leaders over last-minute additions to the constitution. They are trying to win Sunni support ahead of the referendum on 15 October. U.S. officials were acting as mediators.

But the sides appeared to remain far apart over basic issues -- including the federalism that Shi'ites and Kurds insist on. Copies of the draft constitution already are being distributed to the public across the country.


See also:

RFE/RL Special: Iraq Votes

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