Iraq assault 'could last for several days'
A MAJOR US military operation targeting suspected Iraqi insurgents and foreign fighters near Samarra, about 60 miles north of Baghdad, could continue for several days.
The biggest airborne operation in Iraq since the US invasion in 2003, it involves 50 helicopters and 1,500 Iraqi and US troops.
In a well-publicised show of force, forces swept into the countryside yesterday, looking for insurgents. The military said that the assault - Operation Swarmer - detained 41 people, found stolen uniforms and captured weapons including explosives used in making roadside bombs.
There was no bombing or firing from the air in the offensive.
Operation Swarmer came as the Bush administration was attempting to show critics at home and abroad that it is dealing effectively with Iraq's insurgency and increasingly sectarian violence.
White House spokesman Scott McClellan denied the offensive was tied to the new campaign to change opinion about the war. "This was a decision made by our commanders," he said.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Thursday 20 June 2013
Temperature: 12 C to 21 C
Wind Speed: 7 mph
Wind direction: South east
Temperature: 11 C to 19 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: West