A U.S. Marine begins dismantling a ring of concertina wire around a forward Marine base in Fallujah, Iraq Thursday, April 29, 2004. (AP)
A newsflash from AP
FALLUJAH, Iraq (AP) – U.S. Marines announced Thursday an agreement to end a bloody, nearly monthlong siege of Fallujah, saying American forces will pull back and allow an all-Iraqi force commanded by one of Saddam Hussein’s generals to take over security.
Elsewhere, 10 U.S. soldiers were killed Thursday – eight of them in a car bombing south of Baghdad. Two were killed in a convoy attack in Baghdad and roadside bomb in Baqoubah, north of the capital.
The Fallujah deal came after intense international pressure on the United States to find a peaceful solution to the standoff that killed hundreds of Iraqis and became a symbol of anti-U.S. resistance in Iraq, fueling violence that made April the deadliest month for American forces.
Only last week, U.S. commanders threatened to launch an all-out attack on the city to root out an estimated 1,500 Sunni insurgents inside. Even after Washington decided to push ahead with political efforts instead, Marines and guerrillas continued to clash, with the heavy U.S. bombardment of the city the past two nights televised around the world.