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Pentagon: Iraq May Be Headed Toward Civil War


A report from the U.S. Defense Department says violence in Iraq has reached the point where conditions exist for a civil war.

The Pentagon's quarterly report to the U.S. Congress says the security situation in Iraq is, in its words, "the most complex" since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003. The report also says that Iraqis have grown more worried that their country will descend into civil war.

The assessment comes as Iraqi search-and-rescue crews pull bodies Friday from destroyed buildings after a barrage of rocket and bomb attacks on Baghdad killed at least 64 people and wounded more than 250 Thursday.

Separately, news agencies are citing Iraqi government ministries as saying that civilian casualties in the country dropped significantly in August.

Also Friday, former U.S. Secretary of State James Baker and a congressional delegation met with Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Salam al-Zubaie.

Baker heads the bi-partisan Iraq Study Group. The group was appointed by Congress in March to study the U.S.-led war.

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

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