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American Forces Press Service

IED in Baghdad Claims Soldier's Life; Weapons Caches Uncovered

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Dec. 22, 2005 A Task Force Baghdad soldier was killed by an improvised explosive device today while on patrol in Baghdad, military officials reported.

The soldier's name is being withheld pending notofication of next of kin. Officials provided no further details about the incident.

Officials also reported today that multiple weapons caches have been discovered throughout Iraq recently.

Iraqi troops from the 3rd Battalion, 1st Brigade, 1st Iraqi Intervention Force, discovered a cache near a vehicle control point they were manning north of Karabilah on Dec. 21. It consisted of two 122 mm artillery rounds, a 100 mm artillery round, nine 57 mm rockets, two rocket-propelled grenades and a 12.7 mm heavy machine gun.

Iraqi and U.S. soldiers recently uncovered nine weapons caches in north central Iraq, including a huge cache of rockets found near Bayji.

Soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division's 3rd Brigade Combat Team removed nearly 1,000 rockets of various types and sizes from a cluster of three caches discovered Dec. 20. More than 60 large mortar rounds, 79 detonating fuses, an anti-tank mine and a large amount of machine gun and small-arms ammunition also were found at the site. An explosives team destroyed a large portion of the find Dec. 21 with a controlled detonation and was preparing to destroy the remaining weapons today.

The other six caches, discovered from Kirkuk to Balad, yielded a wide variety of weapons, including more than 20 mortar rounds, four rockets, and 15 rocket-propelled-grenade rounds.

Near Dawr, more than 250 anti-aircraft-artillery rounds were discovered Dec. 20, including 100 found by a patrol from the Iraqi Army's 1st Battalion, 4th Division. An anti-aircraft-artillery gun also was discovered.

In the skies over Iraq, coalition aircraft flew 54 close-air-support missions Dec. 21 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. U.S. Air Force F-16s and F-15s provided close-air support to coalition troops in contact with insurgents near Balad, Baqubah and Samarra. Ten U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions in support of Iraq operations. Also, U.S. Air Force fighter aircraft performed in a nontraditional ISR role with their electro-optical and infrared sensors.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq, Multinational Security Transition Command Iraq and U.S. Central Command Air Forces Forward news releases.)

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