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Iraq Transition

Insurgents again target Iraqi military

Car bombs kills 13 in Baghdad, day after tribunal judge is slain

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Saddam's half-brother and four others to face human rights trials.

A look at one way the Iraqi government is dealing with insurgent infiltrators.

A suicide car bomber kills more than 100 in Hilla.
• Interactive: Who's who in Iraq
• Interactive: Sectarian divide

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Insurgents on Wednesday continued their attacks on Iraqi security forces, with two suicide car bombers killing 13 people and wounding at least 30 others.

The first car bomb detonated Wednesday morning in central Baghdad near an Iraqi army recruiting center, killing six soldiers and wounding 28 other people including soldiers, recruits and civilians, Iraqi police said.

A firefight followed the explosion.

The bomber's car exploded near the entrance to the center around 7 a.m. (11 p.m. ET Tuesday) in the Salhiya neighborhood. The vehicle failed to make it past the blast walls surrounding and protecting the facility.

About two hours later, a second suicide car bomb -- targeting an Iraqi military convoy -- exploded in the Jadriya neighborhood of southern Baghdad, police said. The attack killed seven and wounded two others.

The recruiting center has been the object of two previous attacks:

  • February 11, 2004, in which 45 army recruits died.
  • June 17, 2004, in which 35 recruits were killed.
  • On Monday, a suicide car bomber blew himself up in front of a police recruiting center in Hilla, south of Baghdad, killing 127 people and wounding about 150 others -- making it the deadliest attack since the war began.

    Judge, son shot to death

    Wednesday's blasts come a day after insurgents gunned down a judge with the court that will hear charges against Saddam Hussein and members of his government.

    The judge slain Tuesday -- Barwize Mohammed Mahmoud al-Merani -- died along with his son in a hail of bullets shortly before 8 a.m. in the Raghiba Khatoun neighborhood near the Al-Adhamiya district in northern Baghdad. (Full story)

    The district is considered one of the city's most dangerous areas.

    Mahmoud was a judge with the Iraq Special Tribunal and was a leading Kurdish politician, the tribunal's press office said. It was not immediately clear what cases he was to hear.

    On Monday, the tribunal announced that a half-brother of Saddam -- Barzan Ibrahim Hassan Al-Tikriti -- would likely be the first to face trial on human rights charges for crimes allegedly committed in 1982 in the village of Al-Dujail, where 150 families were killed and hundreds more deported.

    Another half-brother of Saddam -- Sab'awi Ibrahim al-Hasan al-Tikriti -- was captured with information provided by Syria, Iraq's interim defense minister said on Tuesday. (Full story)

    The tribunal was established to bring charges against members of Saddam's regime for crimes against humanity, including war crimes in connection with Iraq's wars against Iran and Kuwait.

    According to sources, Mahmoud was one of several people targeted around Baghdad on Tuesday.

    Another judge, Moayad Hamed Al-Jader, and one of his guards were severely wounded in the neighborhood of Jadeeda. The 60-year-old investigative judge was riding with two guards when occupants of another vehicle began shooting at his automobile, the sources said.

    'Fake stories'

    Fliers threatening staffers of U.S.-backed Al-Iraqiya TV are being distributed in the Iraqi towns of Baiji and Samarra, police and eyewitnesses said.

    Baghdad-based, state-run Al-Iraqiya has been airing video of people confessing to being involved in the Iraq insurgency and in acts such as beheadings and suicide bombings.

    The fliers say "TV is showing fake stories" of people they call sell-outs.

    "The plays that are being showed by Allawi TV are targeting the reputation of mujahedeen who gave lessons to the infidels -- the occupiers," the fliers say.

    For weeks the confessions have been aired between ads calling for recruits to join Iraqi security forces.

    A group called "Al-Jihad wa Al-Da'wa" signed the fliers, police and eyewitnesses said.

    Other developments

  • Ukraine will begin pulling its troops from Iraq March 15, when the first of 150 military personnel will leave, Ukrainian officials said Tuesday. Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk will travel to Washington March 10-11 to meet with top U.S. officials. Ukraine has 1,650 troops in Iraq, the sixth largest contingent.
  • A French journalist -- missing since early January -- pleaded for help in a video obtained by news agencies in Iraq on Tuesday. In the video, Florence Aubenas, 43, is shown sitting with her arms around her knees in front of a plain red background. (Full story)
  • A second U.S. soldier has died of injuries suffered Monday during a vehicle accident northwest of Baghdad, according to a military statement released Tuesday. The death puts the U.S. death toll in the Iraq war to 1,498, according to the U.S. military.
  • Iraq's interim government replaced the human rights abuses of ousted dictator Saddam Hussein with its own variety of offenses including torture, arbitrary arrests, bribery and death, according to an annual U.S. human rights report. (Full story)

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