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Shi'ite Cleric Killed in Southern Iraq

  • VOA News

Iraqi gunmen have killed a leading Shi'ite cleric in ongoing violence that Iraqi officials say has killed 12-thousand civilians. Police said attackers shot cleric Ali Abdel Hussein near his house in the southern city of Basra late Thursday. Officials also say a Turkman official General Sabah Qaratun was killed in a separate attack in Kirkuk onFriday. Two loud explosions were heard in Baghdad today, though no injuries were reported. The latest attacks come as Iraq's interior ministry issued its first civilian death toll, showing an average of 20 people have died each day over the past 18 months. Meanwhile, Iraqi security forces in Baghdad are continuing their crackdown on insurgents, which has led to the arrests of some 700 suspected terrorists.
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