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Two South Baghdad Churches Targets of Suspected Car Bombs

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 8, 2004 – Two suspected vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices detonated within minutes of each other today, targeting two Christian churches in southern Baghdad, Iraq.

The first blast exploded near the St. George Church in southern Baghdad at about 6:25 p.m., according to Multinational Force officials. Initial reports from this incident indicate there were no casualties from the attack.

The second suspected car-bomb blast detonated at about 6:30 p.m., less than a mile east of the first blast, outside the St. Matthew Church in southern Baghdad. Casualty figures have not yet been reported from the scene of this attack, but Iraqi police and emergency medical personnel responded, officials said.

A spokesman for Task Force Baghdad condemned the attacks.

"These are not military operations targeting military objectives. These are simply terrorists attacking innocent people, ... innocent Iraqis," said U.S. Army Lt. Col. James Hutton, the chief spokesman for the 1st Cavalry Division.

Officials said that no multinational forces were wounded or killed in either attack.

Earlier today, a Task Force Baghdad soldier was killed when a patrol came under small-arms fire in eastern Baghdad at approximately 3:15 p.m., according to reports.

The soldier was medically evacuated from the site of the attack but died of wounds at a military medical treatment facility, officials said.

The name of the soldier killed is being withheld pending notification of next of kin. All three incidents are under investigation, officials said.

Later, a Warrior armored vehicle from the British Scotland Black Watch Battle Group was hit by a roadside bomb north of Camp Dogwood.

One soldier was killed and two others were injured, neither seriously, when the Warrior left the road after having its wheels along one side blown off. The wounded soldiers were taken by a U.S. helicopter medical team to a U.S. military hospital in Baghdad and the damaged Warrior was taken back to Camp Dogwood.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)

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