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Car Bomb Explosion Rocks Northern Iraq - 2003-09-10

U.S. military officials say a car bomb has exploded in northern Iraq, killing two people and wounding more than 40, including six Americans.

The car bomb exploded late Tuesday in the northern city of Arbil, outside a building used by the U.S.-led coalition. A military official said the injured Americans worked for the Defense Department.

In other incidents, military officials say a U.S. soldier was killed in Baghdad while trying to defuse a bomb. Another U.S. soldier was killed Tuesday and one was wounded in an attack on a supply convoy in northeast Baghdad. Five other American soldiers were also wounded in two attacks in the western part of the Iraqi capital.

More than two dozen American soldiers have been wounded in the past three days. U.S. officials say there are on average 12 attacks on coalition forces in Iraq each day.

The attack in Arbil was the fifth major car bombing in the past month, which include attacks on the U.N. headquarters in Baghdad and on Shiite Islam's holiest shrine in Najaf. Many Iraqi and coalition officials blame the attacks on remnants of the deposed regime of Saddam Hussein, seeking, possibly with help from foreign fighters, to maintain instability in Iraq and undermine efforts at reconstruction.

Meanwhile, Iraqi's interim Governing Council welcomed the decision by the Arab League to admit their delegation to the foreign ministers meeting in Cairo.

The head of the Council, Ahmed Chalabi, called the delegation's acceptance a very good development.

Speaking at his first news conference since assuming the rotating chairmanship last week, Mr. Chalabi said he believes Arab countries are now convinced that the Governing Council represents all of Iraq. He said this is encouraging, given the earlier opposition of some countries to the coalition-appointed body.

The Arab League has refused to recognize the Governing Council, saying it was not chosen democratically. But its foreign ministers this week agreed to allow the Iraqi delegation to attend its meeting in Cairo.

Mr. Chalabi also announced he will visit Turkey on Thursday. Asked about reports of Turkish troops being sent to Iraq, he referred the question to the coalition officials, saying they were responsible for Iraqi security matters. Nevertheless, he said the goal of the Governing Council ultimately is for all foreign troops to leave Iraqi soil.