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Iraqi Official: Saddam Held in Baghdad

Iraqi Official: Saddam Held in Baghdad

Posted - Dec. 17, 2003 at 8:08 a.m.



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BAGHDAD, Iraq - The U.S. military is holding Saddam Hussein in the Baghdad area, a member of the Iraqi Governing Council said Wednesday.

"He is still in greater Baghdad," said council member Mouwafak al-Rubaie. "Maybe he will stay there until he stands trial."

U.S. officials have confirmed that the former dictator was at an undisclosed location in Iraq .

Al-Rubaie spoke at a news conference where council members issued a statement asking for Iraqis to seek reconciliation following the weekend capture of Saddam.

Meanwhile, an explosives-laden truck speeding toward a police station collided with a bus at an intersection before dawn Wednesday, killing at least 10 Iraqis amid a surge of violence since the weekend arrest of Saddam Hussein.

Twenty people also were injured in the attack in al-Bayaa, a poor district in southwest Baghdad, hospital officials said. Ahmed Kadhim Ibrahim, deputy interior minister, said the dead were Iraqis, and that the truck driver had planned to strike the police station.

Ibrahim blamed the bomb Wednesday on Saddam's supporters.

"They were trying to avenge the cowardly leader, whom they saw as a hero in the past," Ibrahim said.

The bomb in Baghdad followed other bombs earlier this week in Baghdad, as well as ambushes by Saddam loyalists of a U.S. patrol in Samarra, the storming of the office of a U.S.-backed mayor in Fallujah and battles with American troops in Ramadi.

The 4th Infantry Division and Iraqi forces started a new series of raids, dubbed Operation Ivy Blizzard, on Wednesday in Samarra.

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