Iraqi officials say insurgents have killed 11 Iraqi police recruits in an ambush in northwestern Iraq.

The officials say gunmen fired on a bus carrying the police recruits Monday in a town west of Mosul.

Iraqi security forces have been cracking down on al-Qaida in Iraq fighters in and around Mosul in recent days with the help of U.S. troops.

Earlier, Iraqi officials said police detained, Abdul-Khaliq al-Sabawi a suspected senior leader of al-Qaida in Iraq in the Mosul region. There was no immediate confirmation of the arrest from the U.S. military.

Also Monday, an Iraqi police chief was killed by a bomb planted in his office near the southern city of Nasiriyah.

In another development, Iraqi Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi says the U.S. military must do more than apologize after an American soldier used a Koran for target practice.

The vice president, who is a Sunni Arab, says the soldier should receive the "most severe punishment" to ensure others do not repeat the act.

U.S. Major General Jeffrey Hammond delivered an apology Sunday to Sunni tribal leaders in the town of Radhwaniya, west of Baghdad, where the incident took place. Residents found the Koran riddled with bullets at a shooting range on May 11.

The U.S. military says the soldier has been removed from Iraq and faces disciplinary action.

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