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Celebratory Gunfire Kills 3 in Iraq After Football Game


Iraqi security officials say three people were killed by stray bullets in Baghdad Saturday, as jubilant Iraqis marked the victory of their football team in the Asian Cup quarterfinals.

Police say at least 25 others were wounded in the barrage of celebratory gunfire throughout the capital following the match.

Earlier Saturday, the U.S. military said six insurgents were killed and another five were wounded in an overnight air strike north of Baghdad. A statement said the air strike began after gunmen fired on U.S. forces in the town of Husseiniyah.

But Iraqi officials and witnesses said 18 civilians died in the attack and 21 others were wounded.

In other violence Saturday, Iraqi police said insurgents attacked a minibus in eastern Baghdad, killing five people and wounding 11 others.

In southern Iraq, Britain's Defense Ministry said a British soldier was killed Saturday after an attack on the Basra Palace. The ministry said in a statement that the soldier died as a result of an indirect fire attack.

Also Saturday, the Iraqi army said troops killed five militants and detained more than 40 in an operation in eastern Diyala province, near the Iranian border.

And, south of the capital, Iraqi police Saturday said a car bomb killed at least one person and wounded several others.

Separately, the U.S.-led forces said Iraqi and coalition troops detained an unnamed Iraqi politician who allegedly has links to al-Qaida. A statement said Iraqi soldiers raided a residence Friday to capture a council member in the city of As-Sadiyah.

The detainee, who the military says was once a mayor, is allegedly linked to kidnappings, murders and extortion in Diyala province.

The Iraqi troops were advised by U.S. Special Operations Forces.

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

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