Two Soldiers Killed, Raids on Insurgents Continue in Iraq
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Feb. 5, 2005 Two Task Force Danger soldiers were killed and four were wounded in an improvised explosive device attack on their patrol near Bayji, Iraq, Feb. 4, Multinational Force Iraq officials announced today.
One soldier died at the scene of the attack and another died of wounds at a Multinational Forces medical treatment facility, officials said. The four wounded troops, who were riding in an up-armored Humvee when attacked, were taken to a medical facility for treatment. Two of the soldiers were treated for their injuries and returned to duty.
Meanwhile, multinational forces continued their progress in tracking down insurgents and confiscating weapons caches, officials reported. On Feb. 4, they detained four suspected insurgents during cordon-and-search missions near Mosul and identified weapons caches, thanks to tips from Iraqi citizens, officials reported.
Troops from 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division (Stryker Brigade Combat Team), detained four individuals suspected of terrorist activities in northern Iraq. Members of 2nd Brigade, 14th Cavalry Regiment, detained two suspects south of Mosul, and soldiers from the 3rd Brigade, 21st Infantry Regiment, captured two others in eastern Mosul.
The operations are part of an ongoing effort to eliminate the threat posed by terrorists and their weapons. Since Jan. 5, officials said, Iraqi security forces and multinational forces have detained 408 suspects and confiscated numerous weapons and munitions.
Iraqi citizens are playing a significant role in this effort, as evidenced in Fallujah, where local residents provided detailed information about two separate weapons caches Feb. 4.
Residents informed Iraqi soldiers of Public Order Battalion 1 regarding the location of a large weapons cache. The soldiers immediately investigated the site and discovered a large stock of weapons and munitions. Officials said the cache included six 100 mm rockets, 20 120 mm French rockets, 6,480 14.5 mm rounds, 200 7.62 rounds, 380 37 mm rockets, 2,000 blasting caps, 76 OG-7 rounds, 151 60 mm mortar rounds, three 82 mm practice mortars, two 120 mm mortar rounds, two 175 mm projectiles, 3,610 fuses, five hand grenades and a rifle grenade.
Also on Feb. 4, Fallujans approached U.S. Marines in the southern portion of the city and informed them of a nearby weapons cache. Upon investigating, the Marines discovered three 60 mm mortar rounds and an 82 mm mortar round.
Elsewhere in Fallujah on Feb. 4, U.S. Marine engineers discovered an enormous improvised explosive device. Officials said the device stretched for 130 meters and consisted of four 136 mm rounds and 17 122 mm mortar rounds that were strung together.
Over the last 24 hours, Marines and soldiers from the 1st Marine Division of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force detained 19 suspected insurgents and discovered several weapons caches during operations throughout Iraq's Anbar province. They discovered and destroyed a rocket-propelled grenade round, an 81 mm mortar round, a 120 mm mortar round, 28 tank rounds and IED-making material.
(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)