Dispatch from Omar, Ramadi Heating Up - 06.08.2006

Two blasts and the assassination of five policemen occurred in Baghdad’s Mansur neighborhood today.

The first blast occurred at 8am. It was followed by heavy gunfire from a car near a police checkpoint, targetting the Iraqi police. The blast apparently targetted a police convoy, but missed and seems to have resulted in no casualties or injuries.

The five policemen were killed by gunfire, it is unknown what happened to the men who fired on them. A few hours later, around 11am a second blast occurred, targetting another convoy, and also missing. Omar witnessed this second blast, and reported no casualties or injuries.
At this time this area in Mansur was surrounded by Iraqi National Guardsmen, who locked down the neighborhood. The blast scenes were cordoned with yellow tape, and the neighborhood was locked down until approximately 5pm Baghdad time.

What Omar felt was most noteworthy about these events in Mansur was the complete lack of US support presence, neither helicopters nor humvees or US soldiers were visible in the area of the blasts.

Photos from Mansur are on the way, and should be up tonight or tomorrow morning local time in Amman.

Meanwhile in Ramadi today, events appear to be heating up, possibly heading for a major operation.

We reached two sources there who explained the situation. Both of whom wish to reamin anonymous for the safety of themselves and their families.

The first reported a US soldier shot in front of his home, during an operation. Apparently he was hit by a sniper.l

The other wanted to report that he and his family, along with dozens of others have fled the city to outlying areas, fearing a major assault is imminent. We are working hard to bring updates from the Ramadi area and will provide them as they come in.


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