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Berlusconi Says Blame for US Troops Can't be Ruled Out in Agent's Death

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi says U.S. soldiers bear some responsibility for the death of an Italian agent at a Baghdad checkpoint, but that the incident will not affect ties with Washington or Italy's troop deployment in Iraq.

Mr. Berlusconi told parliament Thursday that he disagreed with some of the major conclusions by U.S. military investigators into the March 4 death of agent Nicola Calipari. He said the checkpoint was not properly marked and that blame for U.S. troops could not be ruled out.

The Italian agent was shot by U.S. forces at a checkpoint on a road leading to the Baghdad airport. At the time, he was escorting an Italian journalist and former hostage Giuliana Sgrena to freedom.

A U.S. report cleared American soldiers of any wrongdoing, while an Italian report says the troops were nervous and inexperienced when they fired on the vehicle.

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