Police chief in southern Iraqi city killed by bomb in police station

A police chief was killed Monday by a bomb planted in his office in a southern Iraqi town that saw heavy clashes last month between government forces and the Shiite militia of cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. Also Monday, Iraqi security forces launched raids in Shiite militia strongholds in the city of Basra after gunmen killed one policeman and wounded three others. The violence was the latest to shake fragile truces between Shiite gunmen and the government that eased widescale clashes that erupted in early April over a crackdown on militiamen in Basra. The south and the Shiite district of Sadr City in Baghdad have continued to see low-level clashes for weeks amid arrests of Shiite fighters. Monday's bombing killed Lt. Col. Farhan Qassim, chief of police in Suq al-Shiyoukh, an area outside Nasiriyah, 320 kilometers southeast of Baghdad. The blast went off inside Qassim's office as he entered it in the morning, police in Nasiriyah said.