Two killed in bomb attack, rockets hit Baghdad Green Zone

09:33, July 12, 2011      

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A police officer and his driver were killed in a sticky bomb attack in north of Baghdad on Monday, while a barrage of rockets struck Baghdad's Green Zone as U.S. Secretary of Defense is expected to meet with Iraqi officials in the day, the police said.

A sticky bomb attached to a police vehicle detonated in the morning in the city of Baiji, some 200 km north of Baghdad, killing Salam al-Jubouri, a police Lieutenant Colonel, and his driver, a local police source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

Another police officer in the car was also injured by the blast, the source said.

Salahudin province, located in northern central of Iraq, is a mainly Sunni province. Its capital city of Tikrit, some 170 km north of Baghdad, is the hometown of the former President Saddam Hussein.

In Baghdad, three Katyusha rockets in the morning landed on the capital's Green Zone, which houses some of the Iraqi government offices and the U.S. embassy, without causing casualties, an Interior Ministry source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

The rockets were launched from the predominantly Shiite district of Zaafaraniyah in southeastern Baghdad, the source said.

Zaafaraniyah district is also a bastion of militiamen loyal to Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, who oppose U.S. troops' presence in the country.

The rocket barrage came as the new U.S. defense Chief Leon Panetta arrived in Baghdad on Sunday, and is expected to meet with U.S. military commanders in Iraq and will hold talks with top Iraqi officials about whether some U.S. troops will remain in Iraq after the deadline of the end of 2011.

The heavily fortified Green Zone has been frequently targeted by insurgents' mortar and rocket attacks. The roughly 10-square km zone is located on the west bank of the Tigris River which bisects the Iraqi capital.

Source: Xinhua
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