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Violence in Iraq Claims at Least 14 Lives


Bomb attacks and shootings in Iraq claimed at least 14 lives Wednesday.

The violence included three bombings in Baghdad that killed at least four people.

The U.S. military said a U.S soldier died from injuries when his patrol struck an improvised explosive device in central Baghdad. A separate statement said three Marines died Monday from enemy action in al-Anbar province.

Also, the Iraqi parliament approved a law that would let the country's 18 provinces hold referendums on forming federal regions. Sunni Arabs fear the plan could break up the country, leaving them with resource-poor central and western Iraq.

Meanwhile, the genocide trial of Saddam Hussein resumed, one day after the former Iraqi leader was expelled from the court for disrupting the proceedings.

The court heard testimony Wednesday from three Kurdish witnesses. One witness said Iraqi troops attacked his village during the Anfal campaign of the late 1980s. He said his sister and brother were taken away and never returned.

Saddam accused the court of preventing him from defending himself. The chief judge told Saddam he can talk about legal points, but if he threatens witnesses, his microphone will be cut.

Saddam and his cousin, Ali Hassan al-Majid, also known as Chemical Ali, are accused of genocide in the Anfal campaign, which prosecutors say killed more than 180,000 Kurds.

Five other defendants are accused of crimes against humanity. All face the death penalty.

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

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