Attacks close roads to Baghdad


US and Iraqi negotiators reported progress in talks aimed at easing the siege of Fallujah, while the city saw its quietest day for weeks.

Sections of the two highways, north and south of the capital, were closed off to repair damage from a mounting number of roadside bombs. The military warned that civilians found on the closed sections “may be considered to be anti-coalition forces” and come under US fire.

Heavy attacks by gunmen at the western, northern and southern entrances to the city have targeted key military supply lines, forcing the repeated closure of the main Baghdad-Amman road through the violent western district of Abu Ghraib.

Clashes between US troops and militiamen on Saturday killed five militiamen, the military said. Soon after clashes on Saturday morning, a US tank opened fire with a machinegun on a car passing its convoy, killing two civilians.