NEAR FALLUJAH, Iraq, Nov. 21 (Xinhuanet) -- Militant groups in battle-torn
Fallujah have controlled 60 percent of the central Iraqi city and surrounded
dozens of US Marines in Jolan district,witnesses said Sunday.
"Defenders of the city are controlling 60 percent of the city and they are
encircling dozens of US soldiers in Jolan neighborhood," eyewitnesses who
managed to sneak out of the city told Xinhua.
Residents of Fallujah said the southern part of Fallujah, whichis still
under control of the militant groups, constitutes the larger part of the city,
and US troops only control the north andsmall eastern spots in the city.
"Some American troops are based in government buildings and the yare
pounded by fighters," they said.
"In daytime, groups of mujahedeen (Holy War fighters) engage with
hit-and-run attacks with US Marines, and at the same time they gear themselves
up for the night battles," they said.Fierce fighting and loud explosions
resonated throughout Jolan district before the sunset.
US troops continued pounding the area as plumes and columns ofsmoke covered
the sky over Jolan and the southern al-Shuhadaa district.
Early this month, US and Iraqi forces launched a major offensiveto crush
insurgents, including Zarqawi group, in Fallujah, 50 km west of Baghdad.
About one week later, the US military claimed it had controlled the city.