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American Forces Press Service

Militia Commander's Capture Highlights Recent Iraq Operations

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 31, 2007 – Iraqi troops captured a militia commander, a U.S. helicopter crew destroyed a heavily armed vehicle, and an Iraqi police chief and more than a dozen associates have been arrested, military officials reported.

Iraqi special operations forces apprehended a commander in radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr’s illegal militia during an early morning raid in Kadamiyah, a central suburb of Baghdad, yesterday.

The suspect allegedly is responsible for providing financial, logistical and political support for insurgent groups and terrorist organizations. He also is suspected of managing operations to murder and intimidate local Iraqis, ordering several attacks on coalition forces, and overseeing the training of insurgent recruits.

No coalition or Iraqi forces were injured in the operation.

Also yesterday, a team of Apache attack helicopter pilots destroyed a heavily armed vehicle south of Radwaniyah.

The Apache team from the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade spotted the vehicle near a canal. The vehicle had a heavy machine gun mount attached to the bed of the truck and reinforced sidewalls with gun ports.

The Apaches fired two Hellfire missiles and destroyed the vehicle. No civilians were injured.

On May 29, the district police chief of Hit, Hamid Ibrahim Jazaa, along with his brother and 14 bodyguards, were apprehended by coalition forces after an investigation into murder, corruption and crimes against the Iraqi people. All are being held in coalition custody.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq and Multinational Corps Iraq news releases.)

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