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Iraqi meeting discusses new offensive

Feb. 2, 2008 at 7:36 PM
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MOSUL, Iraq, Feb. 2 (UPI) -- Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and other Iraqi and U.S. leaders held a strategy session Saturday in the northern city of Mosul to prepare for a new offensive.

The aim is to drive al-Qaida in Iraq out of Mosul, the capital of Nineveh Province and a stronghold of the group, CNN reported.

A U.S. military source told CNN that more Iraqi troops would be moving into Mosul soon.

"Iraqis are taking the lead in this action," the source said.

Also present at the meeting were the Iraqi defense and interior ministers, Abdul Qadir Mohammed Jassim and Jawad al-Bolani, and the top U.S commanders, Gen. David Petraeus and Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno.

The meeting came the day after bombings in two Baghdad markets. Investigators say the explosives were strapped to two mentally handicapped women and detonated remotely.

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