Insurgents Kill 5 Policemen in Western Iraq

Insurgents attacked a checkpoint in western Iraq on Tuesday, killing five policemen, police and hospital officials said.

The attack brings to
at least 155 the number of the people killed in a wave of violence
across Iraq since the beginning of this year.

police officer said the assault occurred in the Anbar province town of
Rutba as the police were guarding the highway that links Iraq with
neighboring Jordan.

A doctor in a nearby
hospital confirmed the death toll. Both officials spoke on condition of
anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information.

province was a former al-Qaida in Iraq stronghold and the birthplace of
the pro-government Sunni militia that fought al-Qaida. The attack came
two days after gunmen stormed a government compound and killed seven
policemen in the provincial capital of Ramadi.

recent attacks suggest that Sunni insurgents are seeking to undermine
the Shiite-dominated government after the full withdrawal of U.S. troops
last month.

Many Iraqis fear that the
security forces are not capable to protect Iraq without the help of the
U.S. troops and that the country could descend into violence again.