US warplanes attack Najaf, Sadr City

US military aircraft have started bombing sorties targeting al-Mahdi Army positions in the embattled city of Najaf and the Sadr City district in Baghdad.

    US forces have penetrated deep into Sadr City

    A witness told Aljazeera that there were intense explosions in Sadr City late on Monday night.


    The impoverished slum area is known for its strong ties to Shia leader Muqtada al-Sadr.


    Further south, al-Mahdi Army positions around the Imam Ali mosque in Najaf came under repeated attacks by AC-130 warplanes.


    At least eight blasts were heard in the city as an AC-130 was heard circling above.


    Aljazeera reported the shrine might have sustained considerable damage in the latest aerial assault.


    Overwhelming firepower


    It is unclear whether a US missile
    caused damage to the shrine

    The attacks mark the third consecutive night US occupation forces have resorted to the overwhelming firepower of the AC-130 aircraft.


    Earlier on Monday, al-Sadr spokesman Aws al-Khafaji said a US missile caused some damage on the outer wall of the shrine.


    A US military spokesman denied that his forces caused the damage, but it could not be independently confirmed.


    Al-Sadr's unarmed supporters are still lodged inside the Imam Ali shrine while al-Mahdi Army militia retain control of the alleys and streets leading to it.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera + Agencies


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