Daily war briefing

War In Iraq

April 11, 2003

The battlefield

Kurdish fighters and U.S. special forces seized control of the oil-rich Kirkuk area without a fight and were close to holding a second city in northern Iraq.

Military officials said signs are pointing to a last stand by Iraqis at Saddam Hussein's birthplace in Tikrit.

Two Shiite Muslim clerics were killed by an angry mob during a meeting in Najaf set up to forge a reconciliation at one of the Shiite's holiest shrines.

Four Marines were seriously injured when a suicide bomber walked up to a U.S. checkpoint in Baghdad.

Iraqi fighters inside a Baghdad mosque opened fire on U.S. Marines who were hunting for Hussein regime leaders. One Marine was reportedly killed and 22 others were wounded.

Widespread looting persisted in the capital city, 24 hours after celebrating the fall of the regime.

U.S. warplanes hit Iraqi positions near the border with Syria trying to prevent regime loyalists from slipping out of the country.

The international front

U.S. Secretary of State Colin L. Powell assured Turkish officials that the Kurdish fighters will pull back from the oil center of Kirkuk because Turkey is concerned that Iraqi Kurds would declare an independent state.

The home front

Thousands of construction workers and firefighters packed a noontime rally at Ground Zero in New York in support of the war in Iraq.

Terror alert

Security nationwide remained at code orange, a high level.

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