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American Forces Press Service

Coalition, Iraqi Forces Detain 14, Find Weapons

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 22, 2008 – Coalition and Iraqi forces detained 14 suspected terrorists and found weapon caches during recent operations in Iraq, military officials said.

Today in northern Iraq, coalition and Iraqi forces captured seven suspected terrorists, including an alleged al-Qaida kidnapping cell leader, officials said.

U.S. and Iraqi troops detained the alleged cell leader and another suspect in Kirkuk after receiving tips from previously captured associates of the suspects. The alleged cell leader reportedly is tied to kidnappings and terrorist activities in Kirkuk and Salahuddin provinces, officials said.

Coalition forces captured five other suspected terrorists during an operation near Khanaqin, 93 miles southeast of Kirkuk.

In operations yesterday, Iraqi police and coalition forces in Baghdad’s New Baghdad district detained an individual suspected of bombings and indirect-fire attacks throughout the city during the past year.

In operations June 20, coalition and Iraqi troops detained five suspected Islamic State of Iraq operatives and an alleged al-Qaida financier and weapons smuggler in separate operations throughout northern Iraq. The Islamic State of Iraq is an umbrella organization for several insurgent groups in Iraq.

A man captured in Mosul is a suspected Islamic State of Iraq leader in charge of terrorist cells in the Jazeera region. The alleged al-Qaida financier and weapons smuggler was captured in Hawijah, 46 miles north of Baghdad. Four suspected Islamic State of Iraq members were detained in Ibrat Najar, 43 miles west of Mosul, officials said.

Also on June 20, Iraqi and U.S. forces found several weapons caches during numerous operations throughout Baghdad in Sadr City, New Baghdad and the northern part of the city, officials said.

All together, the forces confiscated 28 mortars, 16 artillery rounds, 14 rocket-propelled grenades with charges, four rockets, a mortar tube with base plate, two homemade bombs including one specifically designed to pierce armor-hulled vehicles, four automatic machine guns, various bomb-making materials and more than 1,000 automatic machine gun rounds, officials said.

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

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