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Ben Wedeman: Powell warns of terrorist threat in Iraq

CNN's Ben Wedeman
CNN's Ben Wedeman

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BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- U.S. Secretary of State Collin Powell arrived Sunday in Baghdad, for his first visit since the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime.

CNN's Ben Wedeman reported Sunday from Baghdad on Powell's visit and the latest attack on U.S. forces in Iraq.

WEDEMAN: What happened apparently is a convoy was going out at about 8 a.m. in the Fallujah area, which has been a persistent trouble spot for U.S. Forces. When they drove by in their Humvees, some sort of roadside bomb, what the military calls an improvised explosive device, went off killing one of the soldiers and wounding three others.

Fallujah yesterday was the scene of angry anti-American protests. Following the funerals for nine Iraqi policemen who were killed in an apparent friendly fire incident, in which American forces mistook those Iraqi policemen for anti-coalition resistance fighters.

Of course, [Collin] Powell arrived here in Baghdad this morning. He has been meeting with a variety of people within the coalition authority as well as the recently formed Iraqi government.

He has met with the recently appointed Iraqi foreign minister. After that meeting Mr. Powell told reporters that the major new threat to Iraq and the coalition is what he described as terrorists who have infiltrated the country. He says that of course the coalition forces will not allow that to happen.

For his part, the Iraqi foreign minister said stabilizing security in Iraq is a prerequisite for allowing Iraqis to take full control of their country. He said that he hopes by the middle or end of 2004, Iraq would have a sovereign elected legitimate government in place.

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