Four Iraqis dead in Mosul mortar blast

Four Iraqis were killed and 17 others wounded in an attack on a recruiting centre for the new Iraqi army in the northern city of Mosul, police have said.

    The Iraqi army has been targeted by resistance fighters

    Men were queuing at the entrance to the base

    in an industrial area of eastern Mosul when a single

    mortar round landed among them at 0635 GMT

    .

    Resistance fighters have frequently targeted Iraqis

    joining new, US-supervised security forces such as the police and the army. They accuse them of collaborating with occupation forces.

    Saddam Hussein's 375,000-strong armed forces were disbanded

    after their defeat last year, but

    US commanders are overseeing recruitment to a new army.

    British troop firefight

    Meanwhile, British troops claim to have killed

     up to 20

    Iraqis in a

     series of three

    roadside ambushes in southern Iraq.

    A British military spokesman

    in Iraq said on Saturday t

    wo British soldiers were wounded when a convoy headed north

    on Friday towards the city of Amara from their main base at Basra. He said t

    roops returned fire "to save their lives".

    British-controlled southern Iraq
    has been wracked by violence 

    He added a second patrol which came to their rescue was ambushed by resistance fighters

     who detonated a roadside bomb and opened fire with

    mortars, rocket-propelled grenades and machineguns

    .

    Also in southern Iraq, resistance fighters 

    besieged the offices of the occupation authority in the city of al-Nassirya, firing rifles

    and rocket-propelled grenades, the British spokesman said.

    "A

    number of militia are believed to have been killed," he added.

    An Italian spokesman in the building said fighting had died

    down after dawn, but it was still unclear whether the Iraqi resistance

    were in control of the town centre.

    Baghdad explosion

    And in a separate incident, the US military confirmed a large

    explosion at about midday on Saturday at the sprawling headquarters of

    the US-led occupation force in Baghdad.

    A spokeswoman said the military was investigating the blast

    in the so-called Green Zone at about 0815 GMT.

    The heavily fortified complex, which is home to thousands of US

    soldiers and occupation force employees has come under regular

    mortar attack, but most attacks have been launched at night.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera + Agencies


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