Battles erupted in Baghdad today as rocket attacks killed three US soldiers and wounded 31, CNN reports. The first strike killed one and wounded 14 at a military outpost; “a couple of rounds of fire” killed two more and wounded 17 in the Green Zone soon after, a military official said. Earlier, US troops fought cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's militia, killing at least 20 and wounding 52 in Baghdad, the AFP reports.
The battles broke out as Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki threatened to ban al-Sadr loyalists from politics if they refused to disarm. An al-Sadr spokesman called the move unconstitutional and said Baghdad had no right to disband the militia. "It is up to the side that established it," he said. The US also reported the death of a soldier in a roadside bombing, the AP reports.