3 U.S. soldiers killed in Diyala bombing
Stars and Stripes
MOSUL, Iraq — Three American soldiers were killed Monday by a roadside bomb in eastern Diyala province, the U.S. military announced Tuesday. On Monday, the military had announced five other soldiers were killed by a suicide bomber earlier the same day in Baghdad.
The total of eight American soldiers killed Monday is one of the worst one-day casualty tolls for U.S. forces in weeks. The soldiers’ deaths come amid a spike of violent attacks in recent days that have rocked the country, after months of relative calm.
The Diyala bombing on Monday also killed an interpreter working for U.S. troops. Another soldier wounded in the blast was transported for treatment to a coalition military hospital and remains in stable condition, said Capt. Stephen Bomar, a spokesman for U.S. forces in northern Iraq.
The blast occurred on an isolated stretch of desert road approximately 35 to 40 miles from the Iranian border and was set off by a command-wire device, Bomar said.
It was unclear whether Sunni insurgents or Shiite militants were responsible for the attack. Roadside bombs are a favored method of attack by both groups. The military did identify the unit involved in the attack. The names of the deceased were withheld pending notification of next of kin.
The Diyala bombing comes after five U.S. soldiers in Baghdad on foot patrol Monday died when a suicide bomber approached them in a crowded marketplace and detonated a vest containing explosives.
The two bombings underscore that al-Qaida and other insurgents remain deadly foes, although they have lost significant ground in many areas of the country.
Diyala province remains one of the most intractable regions of Iraq, where insurgents still carry out daily attacks against U.S. and Iraqi forces even after massive clearing operations took place last summer in the provincial capital Baqouba and in other parts of the province earlier this winter.