Daily war briefing

War In Iraq

April 09, 2003

The battlefield

U.S. forces battle pockets of resistance from bands of Iraqi soldiers around Baghdad.

A U.S. tank shell hit the Palestine Hotel where hundreds of journalists were staying, and a U.S. bomb landed on the office of an Arab television network in Baghdad. Three journalists were killed, and at least three others were wounded.

U.S. Marines seized the Rasheed Airport in eastern Baghdad, found a large cache of ammunition and took control of a prison where they found Army uniforms, possibly belonging to American prisoners of war.

Military officials were trying to determine whether Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and his sons were killed in a "bunker-buster" bombing in a residential neighborhood in Baghdad. Several bodies have been recovered from the site.

An A-10 warplane was shot down over western Baghdad, but the American pilot ejected from the plane and was rescued.

American soldiers crushed a counterattack by Iraqi forces armed with assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenades at a key intersection in western Baghdad.

In Basra, a local sheik was named the civilian commander as British troops struggled to bring order to Iraq's second-largest city after looting was reported.

In northern Iraq, Kurdish forces tightened the ring around the key oil center of Kirkuk after heavy coalition airstrikes on Iraqi positions.

After four days of urban combat, the World Health Organization said Baghdad's hospitals were running out of supplies to treat burns, shrapnel wounds and spinal injuries caused by the fighting.

The international front

Wrapping up a two-day meeting in Belfast, Northern Ireland, President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair agreed to give a vital role to the United Nations in the reconstruction of Iraq.

Terror alert

Security nationwide remained at code orange, a high level.

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