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US-Iraqi Military Operation Nets 200 Suspects in Northern Iraq

By VOA News
11 November 2007

The U.S. military says a major joint operation with Iraqi forces has captured more than 200 suspected terrorists in four provinces of northern Iraq.

It says Operation Iron Hammer, which was launched last week, has made significant progress against al-Qaida in Iraq. The U.S. military said Sunday security forces have captured three high value al-Qaida operatives and seized several large weapons caches.

In Baghdad Sunday, Iraqi police say a roadside bomb aimed at a U.S. military convoy killed a 12-year-old Iraqi. They say at least three other Iraqis were wounded in the blast.

In other news, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki says there is no reason to delay the execution of Ali Hassan al-Majid, known as "Chemical Ali," and two others sentenced to hang for the killings of up to 180,000 Kurds in northern Iraq during the 1980s.

Mr. al-Maliki has called for three to be handed over from U.S. custody to face execution.

In September, an Iraqi appeals court upheld the three men's convictions for genocide and ordered that they be executed within 30 days.

That deadline passed without the sentences being carried out due to the Iraqi government's decision to delay the executions until after Ramadan.

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani and Sunni Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi have refused to sign the order authorizing the executions.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP.

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