London — Iran launched a major offensive against Iraqi troops in a bid to recapture a large chunk of territory. Radio Tehran said about 200 square miles of territory was recaptured. Iraq, meanwhile, claimed it crushed the offensive. Iraq said the Iranian drive began Sunday along the frontier about 200 miles north of the Gulf.
The outbreak of fighting is a blow to Gulf states, eager to arrange a cease-fire so that two damaged Iranian wells leaking oil into the Gulf can be capped. The resulting 7,500-square-mile slick has already forced Saudi Arabia to close temporarily one of its water desalination plants drawing water from the Gulf.