Gunmen kill 3 anti-al-Qaida Sunni fighters south of Baghdad, Iraqi officials say

By Saad Abdul-kadir, AP
Saturday, June 19, 2010

Gunmen kill 3 anti-al-Qaida Sunni fighters in Iraq

BAGHDAD — Iraqi officials say gunmen have killed three anti-al-Qaida Sunni fighters south of Baghdad.

Police and hospital officials say the attackers opened fire on a checkpoint manned by the local group known as an Awakening Council.

The Sunni movement against al-Qaida in Iraq has been key to a sharp drop in violence in recent years. Insurgents frequently target members as revenge or to discourage others from joining.

Saturday’s attack comes a day after more than 30 people were killed in a wave of bombings and shootings nationwide. Iraqi officials said that in one of them — a car bombing in the northern city of Tuz Khormato — the final toll was 12 dead.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to release the information.

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