10 U.S. Marines killed in Falluja

Ten U.S. Marines conducting a foot patrol outside the Iraqi city of Falluja were killed in the explosion of an insurgent bomb on Thursday, the U.S. military announced on Friday.

In a statement released in Falluja, the military said another 11 Marines were wounded in the blast caused by an “improvised explosive device” fashioned from several large artillery shells. Seven of those wounded have been able to return to duty, the military said.

The attack is one of the worst single incidents to hit U.S. Marines in the war.

In another deadly incident, 14 Marines died on August 3 south of Haditha in western Iraq when their Amphibious Assault Vehicle was blown up with a roadside improved explosive device made from three land mines.

The military statement said that Marines “continue to conduct counterinsurgency operations throughout Falluja and surrounding areas to provide a secure environment for the national elections, December 15.” Iraqi voters select a new government in those elections.