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Iraq Bomb Attacks Kill 12 - 2004-01-31

A roadside bomb killed three American soldiers in north-central Iraq Saturday morning. And a car bomb explosion in front of an Iraqi police station in the northern city of Mosul has killed at least nine people and injured dozens.

U.S. military officials say the bomb attack against a military convoy occurred southwest of the northern city of Kirkuk. In Mosul, a powerful car bomb detonated late Saturday morning in front of the police station. Witnesses reported seeing multiple casualties and body parts strewn around the area. They also said the explosion shattered windows and sent large plumes of smoke into the air.

A day earlier, three Iraqi soldiers were killed in Mosul when gunmen opened fire on them at a checkpoint. Coalition soldiers and Iraqi police and security forces remain daily targets for attacks by anti-coalition insurgents.

Most of the attacks occur in the so-called Sunni Triangle, once the heartland of Saddam Hussein's power base. But other areas, including Baghdad and Mosul, have also been frequent targets of attacks.

Meanwhile, Dutch officials say Iraqi insurgents hit their embassy in Baghdad with rocket-propelled grenades Friday. The officials say no one was injured in the attack, which sparked a fire at the building. Saturday's attacks occurred as Iraqis prepare to celebrate the Muslim holy feast of Eid al-Adha, or Feast of the Sacrifice. The feast, a major Muslim holiday, comes at the end of the annual holy pilgrimage to Mecca.