Three U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq blast
Police officer shot to death in Baghdad
Shiites protest what they call the "forced displacement" from homes by Sunnis at a rally Friday in Baghdad.
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BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Insurgents killed three U.S. soldiers Friday south of Baghdad and a police officer in the Iraqi capital, and authorities found five slain bodies around the city, the U.S. military and Iraqi police said.
The three soldiers died when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb in Babil province, a military statement said.
Eleven American troops have died in the first five days of the month in Iraq -- all but one in hostilities.
The figures were compiled from Pentagon news releases. Other reported deaths this week include:
In the wake of the U.S.-led invasion in 2003, 2,415 U.S. military troops and civilians have been killed in the Iraq war.
In other violence Friday, gunmen shot dead a police officer, Maj. Ali Hamid, while he was driving in his car in Baghdad's northwestern Kadhimiya neighborhood, Iraqi police said.
Also Friday, authorities found five bodies dumped in locations around the capital. The victims were shot in the head and could not be immediately identified, Iraqi police said.
Authorities suspect that bodies turning up in Baghdad are the result of vendettas between Sunnis and Shiites. The sectarian violence has escalated since the February 22 bombing of a revered Shiite shrine in Samarra, north of Baghdad.
CNN's Arwa Damon, Jennifer Deaton, Cal Perry and Mohammed Tawfeeq contributed to this report.
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