Iraqi officials say a mortar attack in Baghdad has killed at least 15 people as the country's leaders continue to appeal for an end to sectarian bloodshed touched off by the bombing of a Shi'ite shrine last week.
The mortars hit a predominately Shi'ite neighborhood. In other violence, a bomb rocked a Shi'ite mosque in Basra. In Baqouba, gunmen fired at a group of teenagers playing football (soccer), killing two of them. A roadside bomb killed two U.S. soldiers in Baghdad.
The violence came as a daylight curfew was lifted in three provinces. A 24-hour vehicle ban remains in effect in Baghdad and its suburbs through Monday.
Reprisal attacks between Shi'ites and Sunnis have flared since the bombing of the Askariya shrine in Samarra last Wednesday.
Protests over the bombing spread to mainly Shi'ite Iran on Sunday, where hundreds of people threw stones and fire bombs at the British embassy in Tehran.
After a meeting late Saturday with Sunni, Shi'ite and Kurdish politicians, Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari told reporters he believes Iraq is, in his words, "far away from civil war."
The prime minister also said the government will repair all religious sites damaged since the bombing that demolished the dome of the Askariya shrine. An estimated 200 people have been killed in reprisal attacks since then.
Also Saturday, the White House said President Bush telephoned Iraq's top leaders and urged them to work together to calm the violence.