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Iraq: Two U.S. Soldiers, Two Civilians Die In Fresh Attacks

Baghdad, 27 June 2003 (RFE/RL) -- Two U.S. soldiers and two Iraqi civilians died in the latest attacks yesterday in Iraq. U.S. Central Command said a U.S. special operations soldier was killed and eight injured in a hostile-fire attack yesterday morning southwest of Baghdad. An explosive, meanwhile, on a road to Baghdad's airport killed one U.S. soldier and wounded another. Also two Iraqis in an U.S. convoy were killed in a grenade attack in western Baghdad.

At least 20 U.S. and six British soldiers have died in hostile fire since major combat was officially declared over in May.

U.S. Army Captain Sean McWilliams said attacks like yesterday's will not deter the U.S. military. "The point that we want to drive home to everybody is that attacks like this won't deter us from our mission," McWilliams said. "All that the people wanted to do here was stop the transition to a new, democratic Iraq and they are not going to succeed in that. All they wound up [doing] was hurting more Iraqi civilians."

At the United Nations yesterday, officials said the UN terrorism committee had found no evidence to support U.S. President George W. Bush's administration's claims of a link between Iraq and Al-Qaeda.

The White House, meanwhile, said a former Iraqi nuclear scientist had provided U.S. authorities parts and documents from former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's nuclear weapons program that he claims to have buried more than 12 years ago. In Vienna, the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency said that the find of parts appeared to back its stance that the project was not reactivated.