Western flank opened, battle for Basra in south

22 March 2003
On the southern front, US Marines were on the morning of 22 March engaged in a 'major battle' with Iraqi forces outside the city of Basra, Reuters reported. UK Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon said that regular Iraqi soldiers had left the city but that some of Saddam Hussein's elite units were maintaining resistance.

On 21 March coalition troops opened up a western front in the ground invasion, moving towards Baghdad past the town of Nasiriya on the Euphrates river. The US 3rd infantry division, which is spearheading the assault, overcame some resistance in the vicinity of Nasiriya.

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