U.S. launches major Iraq offensive

The U.S. military says 10,000 soldiers are taking part in a major offensive operation against Al Qaeda, north of Baghdad. Officials say 22 militants were killed in the early hours of the operation, known as “Arrowhead Ripper”.

The offensive is taking place in the Diyala province, an Al Qaeda stronghold.

Earlier, in Baghdad, an Iraqi colonel and two guards were killed when an Interior Ministry convoy was ambushed.

And two separate car-bomb attacks killed nine people and injured 25 others.