Roadside bomb kills US soldier in Baghdad
BAGHDAD - A roadside bomb killed a US soldier yesterday in Baghdad, making May the deadliest month for the American military since September.
The fatal attack occurred two days after a blast struck a US convoy west of the capital, killing three Americans, including two civilians and a soldier.
The spike in deaths comes as US forces face a June 30 deadline to pull back from urban areas as part of a US-Iraqi security pact that took effect this year.
At least 20 American service members have died this month and 25 in September, according to an Associated Press tally.
The 20 deaths include five service members killed in a May 11 shooting at a mental health clinic in Baghdad. Sergeant John M. Russell has been charged with murder in the case.
April had at least 19 American troop deaths, more than double the nine killed in March, which was the lowest since the war began in March 2003.
In yesterday's incident, the soldier from the Multi-National Division - Baghdad died of injuries suffered when a bomb exploded near a patrol in a western section of the capital, the military said in a statement.
At least 4,302 members of the US military have died in the Iraq war total, according to the AP.
Four US civilians also have been killed in Iraq since Friday.
They included a top reconstruction official who once headed the Illinois Commerce Commission and a Defense Department employee working for the US Embassy who were killed in the roadside bombing on Monday on the eastern outskirts of the former insurgent stronghold of Fallujah.
A defense contractor also died in a rocket or mortar attack near the US Embassy and another was found stabbed in his car on Friday.