US helicopter opens fire south of Baghdad; Iraqi police: 3 officers killed

US helicopters opened fire after a ground patrol came under attack southeast of Baghdad, and Iraqi police said three officers were killed and one wounded in the strike. The fighting occurred Wednesday near Salman Pak, a predominantly Sunni area that has been the subject of a US military campaign aimed at routing insurgents from rural strongholds and disrupting the flow of weapons to the capital. Ground forces called for air support after coming under small-arms fire near the city, some 25 kilometers southeast of Baghdad, a US military official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the information hasn't been formally released. A US-Iraqi joint security station in the area had come under fire three times earlier in the day, the official said.