US offers deal to halt clashes


The deal includes joint patrols with allied Iraqi security forces and an amnesty for those who turn in heavy weapons.

Coalition spokesman Dan Senor said the agreement with local community leaders also provided for access to hospitals, the removal and burial of the dead and a reduction in curfew hours.

He said local security agencies including the police and civil defence forces, with coalition support, “must move to eliminate remaining foreign fighters, criminals and drug users in order for stability and security to occur.

Senor said local police would have to investigate the killing and mutilation of four US contractors in Fallujah last month and an attack on a police station in March.

The agreement announced today came after several days of talks between coalition officials and Iraqi leaders in the town west of Baghdad.

More than 600 Iraqis and scores of US soldiers have been killed in Fallujah this month in the most vicious fighting yet of the year-long US-led occupation of Iraq.