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An Iraqi Kuridish fighter from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) prepares a mortar for firing against Ansar-al-Eslam Islamic radicals, believed linked to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida, in the outskirts of Halabja on Friday Jan. 17, 2003. The fighting took place about nine kilometers (six miles) from Halabja, a city notorious as the scene of a poison gas attack by the Iraqi army in the waning days of the Iran-Iraq war in March 1988. 5,000 Kurds were killed in the attack.(AP Photo/Hasan Sarbakhshian)
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