Helicopter downed in Baghdad; five westerners killed in two attacks
Iraq, Military, 4/22/2005
American military sources said that a trade helicopter of M-A 8 type was downed in Iraq on Thursday and its nine occupants were supposedly killed.
It is believed that the copter was hit by a missile while heading to the north of the capital Baghdad. The TV of Reuters showed the plane while burning.
News reports said that the three-member crew of the plane and its six civil passengers were on board when it took off. The nationality and the fate of the passengers are not known yet.
The news of downing the helicopter came hours after the killing two Americans working with the American forces in Iraq and injuring other three in an attack targeting a convoy for these forces on Baghdad's International airport highway near al-Amel quarters on Thursday.
Witnesses said that the explosion resulted in destroying three Land Cruise cars which were within the convoy guarded by American armored vehicles. Al-Qaida Organization in Mesopotamia claimed responsibility for the operation.
Al-Qaida Organization also claimed responsibility for the assassination attempt which claimed the life of the prime minister Eyad Allawi whose term of office had expired on Wednesday evening, adjoining what is known the Green Zone. The attempt resulted in killing two policemen and injuring a third.
In Sydney, the Australian foreign ministry announced that one of its citizens was among three Arabs who were killed on Wednesday on the same road in an explosion that targeted their car which was within an America convoy.
In Ltefeyeh to the south of Baghdad, gunmen assassinated the army general in the republican guards, Ahmad al-Saeifi, to the east of the city. One civilian was killed and another injured in a bomb explosion in the same area.
On the other hand, one police man was killed and two others were injured in a bomb explosion against a police patrol in al-Mahaweel area ( 80 Km to the south of Baghdad.).
In Basra to the south of Iraq, a British military vehicle was hit by a bomb on the roadside that resulted in wounding two persons and damaging four civilian cars. In al-Nasereyah to the south, gunmen killed on Wednesday evening Basem Shaker member in the governorate council.
Three persons were injured in a bomb explosion in Sameraa to the north of Baghdad placed on a road trodden by American vehicles and used by the Iraqi army.
In Falluja to the west of Baghdad, witnesses said that the American forces arrested yesterday seven Iraqis in the Golan quarters in the north west of the city during a breaking in operation in which armored vehicles and helicopters took part.
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