Ten U.S. Deaths in Iraq Bring June Toll to 80

By John Ward Anderson
Washington Post Foreign Service
Sunday, June 24, 2007

BAGHDAD, June 23 -- Ten U.S. soldiers died Saturday in Iraq, including seven killed in roadside bombings, the U.S. military said, bringing to 32 the number of U.S. servicemen whose deaths were announced in the past six days.

The deaths bring to 80 the number of American troops killed in Iraq so far this month, an average of about 3.5 fatalities per day, according to iCasualties.org, an independent monitoring group. Sixty of the deaths were caused by roadside bombs, the leading killer of U.S. troops here.

U.S. military officials say powerful roadside bombings are occurring more frequently as more American troops are deploying on the streets of Iraq, particularly in the capital. U.S. officials say many of the materials used in the bombs and much of the know-how for building them are being imported from neighboring Iran.

In the deadliest incident Saturday, four U.S. soldiers were killed in northwest Baghdad when a roadside bomb exploded near their vehicle during combat operations, according to a military statement. An Iraqi interpreter was wounded in the attack.

Two soldiers were killed in eastern Baghdad when their unit was hit by a roadside bomb and then came under small-arms fire, the military said, and another soldier was killed by small-arms fire in the southern part of the capital. A U.S. airman was killed in a roadside bomb attack on his vehicle in Tikrit, about 90 miles north of Baghdad.

Two U.S. soldiers died of noncombat causes, one in Baghdad, the other in Tikrit, the military said.

The British Defense Ministry announced that a British soldier died of wounds sustained in a roadside bombing Friday near the southern city of Basra, bringing to 153 the number of British troops killed in the war.

Elsewhere, at least 12 people were killed and 14 injured Saturday in a drive-by shooting, a sniper attack, a roadside bombing and other violence, according to an Iraqi Interior Ministry official who was not allowed to be quoted by name. In addition, 12 bodies, all bearing gunshot wounds and signs of torture, were found in Baghdad, he said.

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