Coun­cil Head In Fal­lu­jah Shot Dead; 3 GIs Killed

The Washington Post Sunday - - The Conflict In Iraq -

BAGH­DAD, April 21 — The Fal­lu­jah City Coun­cil chair­man, a critic of al- Qaeda who took the job af­ter his three pre­de­ces­sors were as­sas­si­nated, was killed on Satur­day, the latest blow in a vi­o­lent in­ter­nal Sunni strug­gle for con­trol of an in­sur­gent strong­hold.

In Bagh­dad, U. S. and Iraqi of­fi­cials de­fended plans to build a bar­rier around a Sunni en­clave to pro­tect its in­hab­i­tants from sur­round­ing Shi­ite ar­eas. Res­i­dents ex­pressed con­cern it would iso­late the com­mu­nity.

Sami Ab­dul- Amir al- Ju­maili was gunned down by at­tack­ers in a pass­ing car out­side his home in cen­tral Fal­lu­jah, 35 miles west of Bagh­dad, ac­cord­ing to po­lice.

His as­sas­si­na­tion came a month af­ter he agreed to take the job — the only per­son will­ing to do so — with prom­ises to im­prove ser­vices and work with the Amer­i­cans to ease traf­fic- clog­ging check­points in the city of 150,000 to 200,000.

The 65- year- old Sunni sheik was the fourth City Coun­cil chair­man to be killed in about 14 months as in­sur­gents tar­get fel­low Sun­nis who are will­ing to co­op­er­ate with the United States and its Iraqi part­ners. Ab­dul- Amir’s pre­de­ces­sor, Ab­bas Ali Hus­sein, was shot dead Feb. 2.

Also Satur­day, the U. S. mil­i­tary an­nounced the deaths of three sol­diers, killed in sep­a­rate at­tacks.

A road­side bomb killed one U. S. sol­dier and wounded two while they were on a foot pa­trol south­west of Bagh­dad. An­other died and three were wounded in south­west­ern Bagh­dad when their ve­hi­cle was struck by a road­side bomb, fol­lowed by small- arms fire, the mil­i­tary said. And a com­bat se­cu­rity pa­trol in east­ern Bagh­dad was at­tacked by small- arms fire, killing one sol­dier and wound­ing an­other.

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