Sunday, February 25, 2007

Air Strikes launched in Iraq

Baghdad - US forces launched air strikes in southeast Baghdad on Saturday, Iraqi officials said, as a series of massive explosions rocked the war-torn city.

"American aircraft are bombarding terrorist targets that have been chosen by US and Iraqi forces, as part of our Baghdad security plan," said Brigadier-General Qasim al-Mussawi, spokesperson for the operation.

There was no immediate comment from the US, but AFP reporters in downtown Baghdad heard the rumble of more than three dozen powerful blasts in rapid succession at around 22:00pm (19:00 GMT).

Shortly after the first blasts, electricity was cut in part of central Baghdad, but it was not clear if these events were linked.

A senior Iraqi interior ministry official told AFP that the air strikes were aimed at insurgent strongholds in Bo'aitha, a sparsely populated neighbourhood on the west bank of the Tigris, south of the city centre.

While lying within the city limits, Bo'aitha is a district of farms and smallholdings, whose scattered villages are known to house the hideouts of Sunni insurgent gangs linked to al-Qaeda.
Iraqi officials said that the bombardment would run hand-in-hand with sweeps on the ground by US and Iraqi ground forces.

....and the truth shall set us free.

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