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Iraq Transition

Two U.S. Marines killed in Iraq

More convoys attacked in Baghdad

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Insurgents attack Iraqi police in three cities.

A man identified as a U.S. hostage appears in video on Al-Jazeera.
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BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Two U.S. Marines were killed in fighting in western Iraq, and insurgents attacked three military convoys in Baghdad, authorities said Friday.

A Marine was shot and killed Thursday in Ramadi, 60 miles (96 kilometers) west of the capital, the U.S. military said.

Also in the restive province of Anbar, enemy mortar fire killed a Marine on Wednesday near Camp Hit, about 80 miles (129 kilometers) west of Baghdad, the military said.

The number of U.S. troops who have died in the Iraq war stands at 1,551.

In Baghdad, insurgents attacked three military convoys -- two Iraqi and one American -- on Friday, killing at least one person and wounding eight others, Iraqi emergency police said.

A roadside bomb killed one civilian and wounded three others near an Iraqi army convoy in eastern Baghdad's Talbiya district, police said.

In a north-central neighborhood, a suicide car bomb struck a Task Force Baghdad patrol, wounding four Iraqis and an American soldier, the U.S. military said.

On Friday night, a car bomb targeted an Iraqi army convoy in the western neighborhood of Amiriya, police said.

There was no immediate report on casualties. The car bomb attack was the second this week at that location.

On Thursday, Task Force Baghdad soldiers arrested 17 suspected insurgents during raids in the western part of the capital, the U.S. military said.

Iraqi soldiers assisted, seizing bomb-making materials, weapons and U.S. currency, the military said.

Iraqi security forces also seized 27 suspected insurgents Thursday in Baquba, northeast of Baghdad, said Iraqi army Col. Issmael Ibraheem.

Inmates brawl at jail

One inmate died Thursday night and 12 others were injured at a prison in southeast Iraq, the U.S. military said Friday.

A fight broke out at Camp Bucca between two groups of detainees after the inmate was killed, the military said.

A statement from the military didn't indicate how the prisoner died but said an investigation was under way.

More than 6,000 inmates are held at Camp Bucca, south of Basra near the Kuwait border. The camp was set up shortly after the U.S.-led invasion as a detention facility for captured Iraqi troops.

An uprising at the prison in January left four inmates dead and six wounded. The casualties were the result of gunfire from American troops and "violence by other detainees within the camp," a U.S. military statement said.

Two weeks ago, authorities found a 600-foot-long (183-meter) escape tunnel at the prison. Officials said they initiated a search after receiving a tip.

Other developments

  • The hometown candlelight prayer vigil scheduled Friday night for Jeffrey Ake, a U.S. businessman abducted in Iraq, has been canceled, according to the Greater LaPorte, Indiana, Chamber of Commerce. It is not known why it was canceled. Ake was abducted Monday from a construction site in Baghdad. On Wednesday, Arabic-language satellite TV network Al-Jazeera showed video of masked militants surrounding Ake. The network said he asked his family and friends to urge the United States to negotiate with the "Iraqi national resistance."
  • U.S. federal authorities announced Thursday the indictment of a Texas businessman and an oil company he heads as part of a probe of the Iraqi oil-for-food program for the United Nations. David Chalmers, chief of Texas-based Bayoil, which participated in the now-defunct U.N. program, was arrested Thursday in Houston, U.S. Attorney David Kelley said. (Full story)
  • Outgoing interim Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi said Thursday he isn't pursuing a Cabinet post in the country's new government. He said he wants members of his political coalition who campaigned in Iraq's January 30 elections to have four Cabinet positions -- including ministers of defense and interior, an economic post or head of a service ministry. Allawi also said he would like to run the panel charged with writing a constitution and he isn't ruling out a run for the top position in elections for a permanent government -- which are scheduled for year's end.
  • CNN's Enes Dulami, Ayman Mohyeldin and Mohammed Tawfeeq contributed to this report.

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