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American Forces Press Service

Iraqi, Coalition Forces Detain 52 Suspects, Kill 29 Insurgents

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2007 – In operations throughout Iraq the past several days, Iraqi and coalition forces killed 29 insurgents, detained 52 suspects, and found various bomb-making material and ammunition, military officials reported.

Coalition forces killed 10 terrorists, detained 20 suspected terrorists and uncovered enemy weapons and bomb-making materials during operations targeting the al Qaeda in Iraq network yesterday and today.

Coalition forces captured two suspected terrorists during a raid in Baghdad yesterday targeting al Qaeda in Iraq senior leaders in the city. One of the detainees is allegedly a senior leader in the area who oversees al Qaeda in Iraq operations and supervised several individuals detained in successful coalition operations over the past week.

This morning, coalition forces targeted several buildings near Karmah that intelligence reports indicated were associated with a Libyan foreign fighter involved in suicide bombing operations. As coalition forces approached the first building, seven armed terrorists engaged the ground force with small-arms fire. Coalition forces, responding in self-defense, engaged the seven armed men, killing six and wounding one. The wounded terrorist fled the scene.

Coalition forces caught the wounded terrorist and two other suspected terrorists as they moved from the first building into the second. The wounded individual was taken to a military medical facility for treatment and the two suspected terrorists were detained.

During a search of the area, coalition forces found improvised explosive device-making materials, weapons, and a vehicle containing a heavy machine gun and hand grenades. Coalition forces safely destroyed the IED materials, vehicle and weapons on site and detained another seven suspected terrorists for their involvement with foreign fighters and al Qaeda in Iraq suicide bombing operations.

During another raid today in Anbar province, coalition forces targeted associates of an al Qaeda in Iraq senior leader. As the ground force arrived at the buildings near Zaydon, they awakened three men outside the building. One man drew a pistol while the other two reached for weapons. Coalition forces responded to the hostile threat and engaged the armed men with small arms fire, killing them.

Another armed man nearby moved into a tactical position against the ground force, and coalition forces, perceiving a hostile threat, engaged the armed man, killing him.

Inside the targeted buildings, coalition forces detained two suspected terrorists allegedly involved with the al Qaeda in Iraq senior leader network. The ground force also discovered a truck rigged with wires and other indications of car bombs. An explosives team safely destroyed the car bomb on site.

In Mosul today, coalition forces continued to assault the city's terrorist network, capturing a suspected smuggler and four other suspected terrorists involved in IED attacks. Intelligence reports indicate the alleged smuggler operated a taxi and transported terrorist operatives, weapons, funds and letters between Iraq and Syria. He is also suspected of involvement in the murder of a female worker at Badush prison in January.

"We are relentlessly attacking the al Qaeda in Iraq leaders and networks that seek to derail progress in the country," said Lt. Col. Christopher Garver, Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. "Terrorists have no place in the future of Iraq."

Coalition forces killed four terrorists and detained 20 suspected terrorists during operations around the country to disrupt the al Qaeda in Iraq network yesterday.

Coalition forces launched an operation to capture associates of al Qaeda in Iraq senior leadership east of Fallujah. As they approached the two targeted buildings, three armed terrorists maneuvered into tactical positions against the ground force. Coalition forces, reacting to the hostile threat, engaged the terrorists, killing all three.

Within the buildings, the ground force found several military-style ammunition vests and grenades. Five suspected terrorists were detained for their alleged ties to al Qaeda in Iraq senior leaders.

In another operation in Anbar province, coalition forces detained an individual suspected of making and transporting false documentation for al Qaeda in Iraq leaders and operatives. Coalition forces also found identification-making equipment in the suspect's house.

In Mosul, coalition forces killed one terrorist and wounded another armed man during an operation targeting terrorist leaders. As the ground force approached the objective, the two armed men engaged the ground force with small-arms fire. Coalition forces, reacting in self-defense, returned fire, killing one terrorist and wounding the other. The wounded man was taken to a military medical facility for treatment. One suspected terrorist was detained on scene for his alleged ties to a newly appointed al Qaeda leader.

Two other operations in Mosul netted four detainees who allegedly finance al Qaeda operations in the area. Intelligence reports indicate three suspects are heavily involved in a network that conducts kidnappings and hijackings to raise money for terrorist activities.

In Baghdad, coalition forces detained eight suspected terrorists for their connection to al Qaeda senior leaders and the Baghdad car bomb network. On site, coalition forces also destroyed one vehicle known to transport personnel and explosives for terrorist activities.

"We continue to assault al Qaeda in Iraq leaders and their associates," Garver said. "Systematically and methodically, their network is crumbling and their manpower pool is dwindling."

Elsewhere, attack helicopters engaged and destroyed insurgents attempting to emplace an IED near Muqdadiyah yesterday.

The attack helicopters from 2nd Squadron, 6th Cavalry, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, observed four insurgents carry a propane tank and begin digging on the side of the road. Two additional insurgents parked a vehicle between the road and the four people digging to obscure the IED emplacement.

Attack helicopters, armed with hellfire missiles, engaged and killed all six insurgents and destroyed the vehicle. Coalition ground forces secured the area and recovered the IED.

In other developments, Iraqi security forces conducted an early morning raid June 15 and detained a suspected terrorist cell leader who is allegedly responsible for attacks against Iraqi and coalition forces in the Baji area. Working on tips from local Iraqi citizens, Iraqi forces raided the target building and detained the suspected terrorist leader without incident. One other suspected person was also detained during the operation. Iraqi forces also seized a computer, several radio and electronic components, six identification cards, two cell phones, and a portable storage device.

An Iraqi citizen tip led coalition forces to two wanted insurgent cell leaders and nine other suspected insurgents, who were captured during operations June 15, near the village of Hawijah, 40 miles southwest of the city of Kirkuk.

The two men wanted for coordinating attacks against coalition and Iraqi security forces and aiding al Qaeda in Iraq were captured by soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division.

In another operation, Multinational Division Baghdad soldiers confiscated several weapons caches and defeated insurgent attacks in southern Baghdad June 15 and yesterday.

Troops from the 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment "Tomahawks," attached to the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, operating in East Rashid, seized several caches containing two PKC machineguns, one RPK light machinegun, 11 AK-47s, four RPG launchers, one SVD sniper rifle, 1,500 rounds of 7.62 mm ammunition and other bomb-making materials. The soldiers are continuing clearing operations in Dora that began in late May.

In West Rashid, several complex attacks on U.S. forces by extremists were defeated.

Troops from the 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment "Vanguards" killed five insurgents after being engaged with small-arms and RPG fire in two separate attacks June 14 and 15.

"We will continue our efforts on behalf of the Iraqi people here," said Col. Ricky D. Gibbs, commander of the 4th "Dragon" Brigade Combat Team. "Our soldiers will not be deterred in their mission to provide security and stability to the district."

Coalition forces attack helicopters, supporting Iraqi army soldiers who were engaged by insurgents, killed four insurgents and wounded three during joint operations with the Iraqi army south of Baghdad June 15.

The insurgents fired on the helicopters as they approached and continued firing as they ran into a nearby structure. One of the AH-64s fired on the structure, destroying it.

Three sniper rifles, multiple hand grenades and black masks were found by the Iraqi army outside the structure.

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

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