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Mass Grave Found in Central Iraq


Iraqi officials say they have found a mass grave containing at least 12 bodies in a region of central Iraq once controlled by al-Qaida.

Iraqi authorities discovered the site Sunday northeast of the city of Fallujah. Iraqi security forces have uncovered several mass graves in recent months after driving militants from their strongholds.

In another development, Iraq's largest Sunni Arab political bloc ended its boycott of parliament Monday, after saying one of its leaders had been freed from virtual house arrest.

Iraqi security forces escorted lawmaker Adnan al-Dulaimi from his Baghdad home Sunday and brought him to a hotel inside the city's Green Zone, which also houses Iraq's parliament.

Iraqi police surrounded Dulaimi's home Friday after arresting his son and bodyguards on suspicion of hiding car bombs near the politician's office.

Iraqi officials denied that Dulaimi had been under house arrest and said he was kept at home for his own safety.

In other political news, radical Iraqi Shi'ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr has praised his armed followers for obeying a unilateral six-month cease-fire that he called in August. U.S. military commanders have said the truce has helped to reduce violence in Iraq.

In a statement issued Sunday, al-Sadr also strongly criticized the U.S. military presence in Iraq and urged the Iraqi government to remove "occupiers" from the country.

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