Seven US Marines killed near Fallujah

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A massive car bomb exploded on the outskirts of Fallujah on Monday, killing seven US Marines and wounding several others, a US military official said.

A massive car bomb exploded on the outskirts of Fallujah on Monday, killing seven US Marines and wounding several others, a US military official said.

The strength of the blast sent the engine from the vehicle used in the bombing flying "a good distance" from the site, a military official said on condition of anonymity.

Wounded troops were being treated Monday afternoon, the official said.

US forces have not patrolled inside Fallujah since April, when US Marines ended a three-week siege. The city has since fallen into the hands of insurgents who have used it as a base to manufacture car bombs and launch attacks on US and Iraqi government forces.

The US military has retaliated by launching several airstrikes on insurgent safe houses in the city.

Witnesses said the attack took place 15 kilometers (9 miles) north of Fallujah and destroyed two Humvees.

Medical teams in helicopters swept into the dusty barren site to ferry away the injured.

Troops sealed off the area surrounding the wreckage.

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