BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Al Qaeda militants killed at least eight police in southern Baghdad on Thursday, raking them with machinegun fire from a stolen Iraqi army vehicle, police said.
Separately, police said insurgents fired 10 mortar bombs at Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone just before dusk, in attacks coinciding with the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.
A Reuters witness said he saw what appeared to be a body hanging from a damaged minibus in the zone, which houses the U.S. embassy and many government ministries. Police said there were casualties, but had no details.
The eruption of violence ran against the trend of a sharp drop in attacks in recent months.
Al Qaeda in Iraq militants opened fire on a neighborhood police patrol in the Hawr Rajab area of Baghdad, a mainly Sunni Arab area, approaching in at least one of two vehicles they had stolen after shooting at least two Iraqi soldiers.
An Interior Ministry official confirmed that eight "Awakening Council" police patrol members had been killed. He said three Iraqi soldiers were killed and another three were wounded, and that two al Qaeda gunmen had also been killed.
Lovely place, Baghdad. Just a normal outdoor market in Indiana in the summertime. Stupid statements by Indiana congressman Mike Pence aside, yes, believe it or not, Al Qaeda DOES have a presence in Iraq! However, Iraqis comprise five percent of the entire Al Qaeda insurgency. Yes, our number one priority, according to the Bush administration, is crushing that five percent.