Accessibility links

Local Iraqi Officials Protest Iraqi Military Raids in Diyala

Local Iraqi officials are protesting a military operation by Iraqi soldiers who stormed a governor's office in Diyala province and killed his secretary.

Iraqi troops raided the office of Diyala's governor, Raad Rashid al-Tamimi, in the provincial capital, Baquba, before dawn Tuesday. Local officials say the soldiers killed the governor's secretary and arrested a member of Diyala's provincial council, Hussein al-Zubaidi.

After Iraqi troops left the governor's office, officials say the soldiers exchanged fire with local security forces in Baquba. Several people were wounded.

Diyala's provincial council suspended its activities to protest the operation and demanded a government investigation. Local officials say Iraqi soldiers also arrested the head of a regional university at his home in Baquba.

The U.S. military says it was not involved in the raids. Iraqi and U.S. forces recently began an offensive in Diyala to crack down on militants who use it as a base.

Diyala's governor survived a suicide bombing last week that targeted his convoy. The province lies northeast of Baghdad and is home to an ethnically-mixed population of Sunnis, Shi'ites and Kurds.

In other developments, the U.S. military says a rocket attack killed an American soldier Tuesday at a base near the southern Iraqi city of Amarah, in Maysan province.

Elsewhere, the U.S. military says its troops detained 12 suspected al-Qaida members in central and northern Iraq on Monday and Tuesday. It says U.S. soldiers also arrested a suspected Iranian-backed militia leader and another criminal in Baghdad on Monday.

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