The latest deaths bring to 106 the number of US military personnel killed in Iraq since President Bush announced the end of major combat operations on 1 May. Soon after the attacks, a senior Iraqi official called for the redrafting of Iraq's pre-war army in order to help stabilise the country. Writing in the New York Times on 19 October, President of the Iraqi Governing Council Iyad Allawi said that Iraqis should be given the opportunity to secure their own country. 'Ultimately, only Iraqis themselves can restore security, rebuild national institutions, enact a constitution and elect a democratic government,' he said. 'Any American-led military presence, even if complemented by the UN, will never have the credibility and legitimacy that the Iraqi Army has among the people.'