Falluja, the second phase.
US marines in Falluja have come under sustained attack from several different directions in the headquarters they have set up in the Iraqi city.
The BBC's Paul Wood, who is at the scene, said there was sniper fire from four or five points on the horizon.
The insurgents may have regrouped, he says, after US-led troops took over large parts of the city.
Meanwhile, two US Cobra helicopters were hit by small-arms and rocket fire in separate incidents and forced to land.
The BBC's Paul Wood says troops are coming under sniper fire all over the city, he says.
US forces say they have taken control of the district of Jolan, just north of the centre.
However, a witness told the BBC that US forces were still fighting for control there at midday.
Villages to the west of the city, thought by the US to be clear of insurgents, are also reporting sniper, mortar and rocket-propelled grenade fire. al-Jazzera
Abu Shams al-Fallujy, a member of the National Islamic Resistance in Falluja, told Aljazeera that US forces had entered the city's centre rapidly because they were surrounded in the Julan neighbourhood and were being targeted by snipers
With respect to Julan, al-Askary, Nizal, Jibail and the industrial quarter, they are still under control of the resistance which vows not to allow the US forces to control the town unless it is turned into dust," al-Fallujy said.
"The situation in the town is very critical. The US forces began a retreat under intense resistance fire. They are conducting a ferocious aerial bombing and artillery barrage. They have not accomplished any advance towards the edges of the town," al-Fallujy added.
A US officer said they expected to take command of the city before the weekend.
"If everything goes as planned we will take full control of the city in the next 48 hours," he said on condition of anonymity, adding that it would take "at least 10 days to clear the city".Then we can go level Mosul
Insurgents have set police stations ablaze, stole weapons and brazenly roamed the streets of Mosul as Iraq's third largest city appeared to be sliding out of control, residents said.
Explosions and fire from assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenades echoed across the city and columns of smoke rose from at least two police stations set alight. At least seven police stations have been attacked in the past 48 hours.
As US forces battle to suppress insurgents in the city of Fallujah, west of Baghdad, it appears many fighters may have fled to other cities where they are launching new attacks.
In the past three days, there has been a step up in guerrilla activity in Samarra, Baiji, Baquba, Tikrit, Ramadi and parts of Baghdad - across the Sunni Muslim heartland.
In Mosul, a city of about three million people, insurgents attacked a group of Iraqi National Guardsmen blocking a bridge in the city centre, killing five of them and destroying three vehicles, witnesses said. And then on to Baghdad
A car bomb has exploded near a police patrol in a central Baghdad square, killing at least seven civilians, destroying cars and devastating a nearby building, witnesses said.
A Reuters reporter saw four bodies in burnt-out cars at the scene of the blast, in a busy commercial district.
Dr Raad Jabbar at al-Kindi hospital said seven civilians were killed.
There were 18 wounded people at his clinic, he said, and others were taken to another hospital. There was no word on the final toll.
"A car bomb hit a police patrol, wounding several policemen," a police officer at the scene said.
The explosion caused a nearby building to collapse into a pile of rubble and twisted metal. Passersby and rescue workers searched the ruins for survivors.
Posted by bushmeister0
at 12:06 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, 11 November 2004 12:12 PM EST