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Iraq Report: al Qaeda strikes the security forces

Al Qaeda in Iraq has stepped up its bombing campaign nation wide against the Iraqi security forces. Since Friday, al Qaeda has conducted five separate major bombings or attacks, all outside the capital of Baghdad.

On June 8, three separate attacks occurred; a bombing in the northern city of Daquq, another in Qurna in the south, and an attack on the home of a Diyala police chief. "At least 34 others were killed in two bombing attacks, one in the northern city of Daquq, about 30 miles south of Kirkuk, and the other in the southern city of Qurna, 60 miles north of Basra," the New York Times reported. "In a familiar pattern, both bombings involved successive explosions set at close quarters in crowded areas, a technique often used to maximize casualties."

In Diyala, al Qaeda launched an attack against the home of Col. Ali al-Jorani, the police chief in the Balda district of Baquba. Fourteen were killed, including 12 policemen, and Jorani's wife and son. Three were kidnapped, possibly Jolani's daughter and son.

The New York Times properly characterize the attack on Col Jorani's home as "the latest in a wave of attacks across the province that have been directed against Iraqi Army and police bases and their commanders." The next day, on June 9, Iraqi Police killed three suicide bombers as they approached a checkpoint.

Also on June 9, a suicide truck bomber struck a Iraqi Army checkpoint near Iskandariyah, south of Baghdad. Twelve were killed and over 30 wounded in the attack. Today, a suicide truck bomb killed eight policemen and wounded at least 50 in an attack on a police station near Tikrit.

U.S. and Iraqi forces continue to attack al Qaeda and insurgent networks across the country. Today's raids led to the capture of 6 al Qaeda operatives in Mosul and Fallujah, including "a recruiting emir." Saturday's raids resulted in the capture of 4 members of an IED cell south of Fallujah, four members of an IED and sniper cell near Tikrit and 11 members of al Qaeda in Baghdad, Taji and Fallujah. On Friday, 1 al Qaeda operative was killed and 12 captured during raids in Fallujah and Iraqi police captured 7 al Qaeda, including an Afghan fighter, in Muqdadiya in Diyala province. Also, 11 members of an insurgent cell, including 2 cell leaders, were captured in Bayji on June 7.

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