New U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates is wrapping up a three-day visit to Baghdad and is preparing an assessment of the situation in Iraq for President Bush.
Gates has been meeting with U.S. military and Iraqi leaders. He says he will report to Mr. Bush in the coming days. He also says U.S. and Iraqi leaders have plans to reduce sectarian fighting in Baghdad, but he declines to give details.
The U.S. military announced that fighting killed one U.S. soldier in Baghdad today and four other personnel three Marines and one sailor in western Anbar province Thursday.
In Basra, British forces say a pre-dawn raid by more than 800 troops targeted a rogue Iraqi police unit accused of ambushing and killing 17 police academy workers in October. British officials say they captured seven suspects.
In Washington, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said in an interview with the Associated Press that she believes the war in Iraq is "worth the investment" in American lives and funds. She said the United States can still win the conflict,
which she said has been more difficult than she expected.
Information for this report is provided by: AP, AFP, Reuters.