Up to 10 inmates and 8 police officers are reported dead in an attempted prison break-out in the Iraqi capital Baghdad.
Officials say one of the men killed was the man who led the escape attempt, al-Qaeda’s leader in Iraq, Hutaifa al-Batawi.
Officials say al-Batawi grabbed an officer’s gun while being taken for interrogation, shooting dead 4 police agents, including 2 high-ranking officers.
The prisoners thought to be mostly al-Qaeda, were shot dead when security reinforcements arrived at the jail.
Al Batawi was one of 12 people arrested last November in connection with the siege of a catholic church in the Kerrada district of Baghdad.