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Iraq's Traffic Police Chief Escapes Assassination Attempt in Baghdad


Iraqi security officials say the head of the country's traffic police escaped an assassination attempt when gunmen attacked his convoy in northern Baghdad Thursday.

Officials say two traffic policemen were killed and two others wounded in the attack on Jaafar al-Khafaji's motorcade.

Elsewhere in Baghdad, two policemen were killed and six others wounded in car bomb blast in the southwestern Amil district. The explosion occurred as the policemen approached the vehicle to check on a corpse inside.

On Wednesday, an Iraqi army officer said gunmen killed around 70 people in a Sunni district of the northern town of Tal Afar - in apparent revenge for deadly bombings in a Shi'ite area.

Officials say Shi'ite policemen allegedly took part in the rampage.

Also on Wednesday, Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah denounced the U.S. military presence in Iraq as an "illegitimate foreign occupation" and warned that sectarian bloodshed is leading to a civil war.

The Saudi monarch - a key U.S. ally in the region - made the criticism in a speech at the annual Arab League summit in Riyadh.

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