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Dozens Killed in Iraq Violence


Iraqi authorities say a spate of bombings, mortar attacks and shootings across the country killed dozens of people Tuesday.

The attacks took place in Baghdad, the northern city of Mosul and several other towns.

Meanwhile, the U.S. military says more than 60 people were killed in sectarian violence between Shi'ite and Sunni Muslims in the town of Balad since Friday.

Earlier reports said the death toll in Balad was nearly 100.

A military statement said U.S. troops are patroling in Balad and providing support for Iraqi forces trying to stop the bloodshed in the town.

The statement said coalition forces also detained two Iraqi police officers who allegedly were involved in the killing of 19 Shi'ites, in Al-Dulyiyah on Friday, the act that sparked retaliation against Sunnis in Balad.

On Monday, the U.S. military announced the deaths of five American servicemen killed in Iraq on Sunday. This raised the U.S. death toll in Iraq since the beginning of the month to 58.

Also on Monday, U.S. President George Bush called Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to reiterate his support for his democratically elected government.

Mr. Bush told Mr. Maliki to "ignore" rumors that the United States is seeking to impose a timeline on the Iraqi government to improve the security situation.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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