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Helo Crashes Near Baghdad; Officials Detail Recent Operations

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 1, 2006 – A Multinational Division Baghdad helicopter went down at about 5:30 p.m. today southwest of Baghdad, and military officials also reported the results of recent operations in Iraq.

Aside from saying the helicopter was conducting a combat air patrol and the crew's status isn't known, officials provided no further details.

Additional information on the helicopter and the fate of its crew is being withheld pending investigation and notification of next of kin, according to a Multinational Force Iraq news release.

In other news, coalition forces captured three terrorism suspects and killed three others today in Iraq's Anbar province in an operation focused on a site intelligence officials had identified as a safe haven for smuggling foreign fighters into Iraq.

Coalition forces heard shouting from inside the house, which confirmed the presence of the suspected terrorists, and repeatedly requested that the suspects surrender. They did not surrender, so the coalition forces called in a precision air strike, officials said.

A man and a woman were killed in the air strike; another man was shot and killed. Other occupants survived the strike and escaped into adjacent houses.

Coalition forces convinced the occupants of the two adjacent houses to surrender. This resulted in the detention of three additional terrorist suspects, officials said.

Military officials also provided details from other recent operations:

  • Iraqi army soldiers discovered the remains of a would-be terrorist and a roadside bomb March 29 in Baghdad, thanks to a tip from an Iraqi citizen. The citizen told the soldiers that two men were trying to place a bomb on the side of the road. The soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 4th Brigade, 8th Iraqi Army Division, responded to the tip and found the remains of one man and an unexploded roadside bomb.
  • Multinational Division Baghdad soldiers detained a terrorist cell leader March 29 in Baghdad. Officials said he is a former high-ranking intelligence officer and known cell leader, responsible for planning and facilitating operations against coalition forces. U.S. soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, and Iraqi soldiers from the 4th Brigade, 8th Iraqi Army Division, detained the cell leader while conducting a cordon-and-search operation in southern Baghdad.
(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)
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