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American Forces Press Service

Forces Kill, Capture Terrorists, Seize Weapons Caches

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, March 30, 2008 – U.S. aircraft killed 14 terrorists during two anti-insurgent operations conducted in Baghdad today, and coalition forces killed or captured dozens of additional terrorists during other operations throughout Iraq over the past two days, military officials reported.

An American aircrew killed 12 insurgents today after they attacked a U.S. infantry patrol in northern Baghdad. Soldiers assigned to the 4th Infantry Division’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team pursued the insurgents after they had broken off their attack. U.S. military aircraft arrived to provide air-to-ground support. After positively identifying the attackers, the air weapons team engaged and killed the 12 terrorists.

A second air strike in Baghdad today killed two more armed insurgents. The insurgents were linked to an improvised-explosive attack in the Fadaliyah area of New Baghdad. A helicopter of the 10th Mountain Division’s 4th Brigade Combat Team discovered the insurgents hiding in a courtyard after carrying out the attack on the soldiers.

“We are exercising great effort to protect the people of Baghdad. We are only targeting criminals and those acting outside the rule of law. We will continue to defend ourselves and the citizens of Baghdad,” said Army Lt. Col. Steve Stover, Multinational Division Baghdad spokesman.

“Those who refuse to honor al-Sayyid Moqtada al-Sadr’s ceasefire pledge remain a threat to the overall security and stability of Iraq and will be brought to justice,” Stover said.

In March 29 operations:

-- U.S. soldiers killed two insurgents during operations in Baghdad ’s Istaqlal district. Soldiers assigned to the 4th Infantry Division’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team had just discovered a roadside bomb when they came under small arms fire from individuals in a vehicle. The U.S. soldiers returned fire, killing the two occupants and disabling the vehicle.

-- U.S. soldiers and support aircraft engaged and killed 11 terrorists during separate operations in Baghdad.

-- Iraqi Special Operations Forces, acting in concert with coalition aircraft, killed 22 criminal fighters during fighting in western Basra. Two Iraqi soldiers were wounded during the operations.

-- A joint patrol of Iraqi Army scouts and U.S. Special Forces soldiers killed 13 enemy fighters during a firefight in southeastern Suwayrah.

-- U.S. soldiers of the 4th Infantry Division’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team killed two terrorists caught in the act of setting up roadside bombs during a firefight in Baghdad’s Sadr City section.

In March 28 operations:

-- Soldiers of the 101st Airborne Division’s 2nd Brigade Combat Team killed one insurgent in northeastern Baghdad after observing him carrying a rocket-propelled-grenade launcher in an alleyway.

-- A U.S. military vehicle struck a roadside bomb in northeastern Baghdad, and a number of insurgents then fired on soldiers while they attempted to recover the vehicle. The soldiers spotted and engaged two of the attackers, killing them both.

-- Insurgents attacked Iraqi security forces and coalition soldiers at a checkpoint in northwestern Baghdad. An air weapons team was called in to assist the ground force. The air weapons team fired a hellfire missile from the helicopter, targeting 10 enemy fighters armed with rocket-propelled-grenade launchers and automatic weapons. All 10 terrorists were killed in the engagement.

-- During a combat patrol U.S in southern Baghdad, insurgents attacked soldiers of the 1st Infantry Division’s 4th Brigade Combat Team with small-arms fire. The soldiers returned fire and killed nine terrorists. An hour later, an insurgent armed with a rocket launcher attacked U.S. soldiers and struck an Abrams tank. Soldiers spotted the terrorist and killed him.

-- U.S. and Iraqi soldiers found a weapons cache in Mahmudiyah. The cache contained more than 15 explosively formed projectiles, hundreds of rounds, Iraqi police uniforms and rifles, more than 100 bomb-making components, detonation cord, fuses and a bag of homemade explosives.

-- U.S. and Iraqi soldiers discovered six weapons caches across northern Iraq. Five were discovered in Salah ad Din province and one in Diyala province.

-- U.S. soldiers of the 4th Infantry Division’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team killed seven insurgents during a firefight near a checkpoint in Baghdad’s Sadr City section.

-- U.S. soldiers seized a small weapons cache and killed an insurgent in the New Baghdad district. Soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division’s 4th Brigade Combat Team found the cache and then were attacked by terrorists using small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades. Soldiers from the 4th Brigade, 1st National Police Division National Police Transition Team engaged the terrorists. Initial reports indicate one enemy fighter was killed and two more were wounded. No U.S. soldiers were injured.

“These criminal elements who insist on ignoring al-Sayyid Moqtada al-Sadr’s ceasefire pledge are certainly not working in the best interest of Iraqis,” said Army Lt. Col. Steve Stover, a spokesman for Multinational Division Baghdad. “We will continue our efforts to bring these criminals to justice.”

-- U.S. aircraft engaged and destroyed a rocket site after observing several terrorists removing rocket rails from a location in eastern Baghdad. After observing the terrorists flee the scene, the aerial weapons team destroyed the attack site, followed the terrorists and destroyed a get-away vehicle which contained rockets in the trunk.

-- In another eastern Baghdad attack, U.S. soldiers killed two terrorists after their patrol was attacked with rocket-propelled grenades and small-arms fire. In a third attack in eastern Baghdad, U.S. soldiers killed ten terrorists after a joint security station was attacked by small-arms fire. There were no coalition or civilian casualties.

-- U.S. soldiers discovered two weapons caches during combat operations in and around Baghdad. Soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division’s 4th Brigade Combat Team discovered a weapons cache in eastern Baghdad. The cache consisted of two explosively formed projectiles, four 120 mm artillery rounds and two 60 mm mortar rounds. Soldiers seized the cache and detained three individuals. Afterward, the soldiers were attacked by terrorists using heavy small-arms fire from multiple locations. Soldiers returned fire and killed one terrorist. Two terrorists were injured and taken to a hospital where they were treated and detained.

-- Another group of U.S. soldiers discovered a different weapons cache later in eastern Baghdad. The cache contained two explosively formed penetrators, 12 60mm mortar rounds, 12 rocket propelled grenades, 12 blocks of explosives, 32 explosives casings, 12 police uniforms, four armored jackets, four sets of handcuffs and 1,100 machine-gun rounds.

“Along with our Iraqi security force partners we are targeting criminals and criminal networks and those who are choosing to disobey al-Sayyid Moqtada al-Sadr’s ceasefire pledge,” said U.S. Army Col. Allen Batschelet, chief of staff for Multinational Division Baghdad. “We will continue to conduct precision operations based on substantial evidence of criminal activity.”

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

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