(dpa) - The US military said Sunday that it had killed over 40 members of the militia of Shiite cleri Muqtada al-Sadr in fighting in Baghdad at the weekend.
The military command said that on Friday and Saturday, a total of 43 "terrorists" and "criminal fighters" had been killed in the fighting.
In addition, an Iraqi special forces unit killed 22 Sadrists in the southern port city of Basra on Saturday, the US army said.
Meanwhile a leading member of the Sadr movement accused Iraqi government forces and the US military of using jets and helicopters in arbitrarily bombing residential buildings in the Shiite suburb Sadr City east of Baghdad on Saturday evening.
"It appears that (Premier Nuri) al-Maliki has become caught up in the hysteria," said Sadr movement member Fatah al-Sheikh.