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Iraqi Leader Frees Sadr Aide Held by U.S. Troops

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki orders the release of a Shiite cleric who had been detained by U.S. forces on suspicion of running death squads, creating fresh tension between the U.S. military and the Iraqi government.

The Baghdad-area cleric is an aide to Muqtada al-Sadr, a key ally of Maliki. U.S. officials have long alleged that Sadr's militia, known as the Mahdi Army, is the biggest culprit in Iraq's burgeoning sectarian conflict.

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