updated 11/5/2006 1:18:06 PM ET 2006-11-05T18:18:06

U.S. and Iraqi security forces killed 53 suspected insurgents in a raid southeast of Baghdad, Iraqi police said Sunday.

Police Lt. Bilal Ali Majid said Saturday night’s raid targeted an area of fruit farms near the city of Madain, about 14 miles from the capital.

Majid said Iraqi and U.S. forces had come under repeated attack from gunmen in the area who were suspected of having links to al-Qaida in Iraq. He said air cover was used in the assault, launched after information was received that insurgents might be planning attacks for Sunday, when a verdict is to be delivered in the trial of Saddam Hussein.

There was no immediate comment on the reported raid from the U.S. military.

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