Iraq: Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki says he will crack down with an "iron fist" on gangs spearheading factional violence in the Shi'ite-dominated city of Basra that is a center of the country's oil trade.
In a speech to local leaders, Mr. Maliki said security must be restored in the southern city and that security forces must be able to work without fear or interference from political parties. Since taking office this month, the prime minister has vowed to rein in insurgents and escalating sectarian violence.
Meanwhile, a car bomb explosion in the northern city of Mosul wounded at least 19 people, including five policemen.
Iraq Sidebar: Haditha: The Bush administration has promised full public disclosure of the results of a U.S. military investigation into the alleged killings of Iraqi civilians by U.S. Marines last year.
White House spokesman Tony Snow said Tuesday the Department of Defense has taken an active and aggressive role in the probe of the deaths in the Iraqi city of Haditha. Snow said he was assured by the U.S. military that investigators will release all the details of the alleged deaths after the probe is complete.
Afghandistan: Afghan authorities say Taleban guerrillas have overrun a district headquarters in central Uruzgan province, driving out government forces in a battle that lasted for several hours.
Local officials say hundreds of militants stormed Chora district and took over the main police and government compound late Tuesday. There were no confirmed reports about casualties.
They say the militants appeared to have left the compound this (Wednesday) morning, but government troops were waiting for reinforcements before re-entering the area.
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