Iraq's election commission says it has rejected a small number of ballots from last month's parliamentary vote, and plans to issue final results later this week.

Officials said ballots from 227 boxes were thrown out, adding the move should not affect the vote tally. They said final results from the remaining 31,000 boxes will be announced as early as Friday.

Vote results have been delayed for weeks, after some Sunni Arab groups alleged widespread fraud.

Near Baghdad, a U.S. military helicopter crashed Monday killing the two soldiers on board.  In an unverified Internet claim, insurgents said they hit the aircraft in a rocket attack.

Meanwhile, Iraqi prosecutors said the trial of Saddam Hussein is to resume January 24th without the chief judge. Judge Rizkar Mohammed Amin quit last week, complaining of government interference.

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