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American Forces Press Service

Troops Kill Five Insurgents, Seize Suspects, Weapons in Iraq

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 4, 2007 – Iraqi and coalition forces killed five insurgents, detained 20 suspects and seized weapons in Iraq over the past three days, military officials said.

In Iraq today:

-- Coalition forces shot and killed a terrorist who launched an attack from a Diyala River Valley mosque. Troops detained two armed suspects onsite, and one individual fled the area.

-- Troops detained four suspected terrorists in Samarra during an operation targeting al Qaeda associates. Intelligence reports indicate that the area is a safe haven for al Qaeda senior leaders and foreign terrorists.

-- Coalition forces detained an al Qaeda associate south of Baghdad who military officials believe is linked to a car-bombing network. During the operation, troops destroyed one building that was being used by terrorists. A secondary explosion erupted from the site, suggesting that explosives were stored inside, military officials said.

During operations in Iraq yesterday, Iraqi Army scouts and U.S. Special Forces advisors detained five and killed two suspected al Qaeda terrorists during an early-morning raid in Balad. As the raid began, the assault force encountered a suspected terrorist who approached with an AK-47 assault rifle. Troops shot and killed the suspect after he failed to heed verbal warnings. Moments later, troops killed a second suspected terrorist who approached with an AK-47 assault rifle and also ignored warnings to stop.

Troops detained five suspected terrorists linked to recent sectarian violence in the Balad area during the operation. Recently, the detained terrorists allegedly destroyed several local bridges in an attempt to hinder Iraqi and coalition forces’ ability to move, military officials said. The terrorists also are linked to recent car-bomb attacks on coalition checkpoints that killed four Iraqi army soldiers and wounded 10. At the raid site, coalition forces found and destroyed two grenades and 19 sticks of dynamite. No Iraqi or U.S. forces were harmed during this operation.

In Hawji yesterday, coalition forces targeted an al Qaeda associate who allegedly leads a media network in Tamim province and holds ties to foreign terrorists operating in the area, military officials said. Troops detained one suspect on site.

“Coalition forces will respond to hostile threats while simultaneously respecting the sensitivity of Iraqi cultural sites,” said Army Maj. Winfield Danielson, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. “However, we cannot allow al Qaeda in Iraq any safe haven, and if criminals use force to resist being brought to justice, Iraqi and coalition forces will defend themselves.”

During Oct. 2 operations in Iraq:

-- Iraqi soldiers detained a suspect in Kindi who allegedly provides more than $50,000 to al Qaeda operatives each month, military officials said. The financier, who fronts as a leather merchant, is suspected of netting $100 million this summer from terrorist supporters who illegally crossed the Iraqi border by land or flew into the country from Italy, Syria and Egypt.

-- Iraqi special operations forces detained a suspected al Qaeda platoon leader in Radwaniyah. The extremist leader commands 15 men who have killed several coalition forces in improvised-explosive-device and direct-fire attacks, military officials said.

-- Iraqi national police located a weapons cache in the Mansour district of western Baghdad. Police members seized 14 AK-47 assault rifles, seven RPK machineguns, one 9 mm pistol, more than 2,250 ammunition rounds, four rocket-propelled grenades and explosive materials, military officials said.

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

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