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At Least 5 More G.I.'s Are Killed in Iraq, 2 in Unraveling of Militia Truce in Kufa

At least five American soldiers died in Iraq during a 24-hour period that began Sunday, two of them fighting insurgents in the holy city of Kufa during the unraveling of a cease-fire agreement with a rebel Shiite cleric, military officials said Monday. The two soldiers were the first to be reported killed in combat in the adjoining southern cities of Najaf and Kufa since the First Armored Division began operations there to put pressure on the cleric, Moktada al-Sadr, to disarm his militia. At least 808 American troops have died since the war began in March 2003. The American-appointed governor of Najaf said Monday that prominent Shiite political and religious leaders had persuaded Mr. Sadr to agree to a new truce. Under the proposal, Mr. Sadr’s militia would put away its weapons in exchange for the Americans’ halting patrols for 48 hours. But American commanders had not approved the deal as of late Monday. Full Story

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