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Coalition Forces Continue to Close in on Terrorists Networks

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 23, 2007 – Coalition forces captured 12 suspected terrorists during operations targeting al Qaeda and its logistics networks around Iraq today.

Coalition raids of safe houses in Mosul, Yusafiyah, Tarmiyah and south of Baghdad resulted in the capture of individuals suspected of facilitating the movement of foreign terrorists into and around Iraq for al Qaeda operations.

“Foreign terrorists who come to Iraq to support al Qaeda will find no safe haven to operate from,” said Army Maj. Marc Young, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. “We will not tolerate terrorists’ indiscriminate attacks against innocent Iraqis.”

In operations yesterday, U.S. Special Forces advised elements of 2nd Iraqi Army Division and 3rd Iraqi Army Brigade in separate missions resulting in the detention of key operatives near Taji.

In one mission, Iraqi troops detained a high-level financier of al Qaeda-affiliated Islamic army of Iraq. The individual is alleged to be responsible for financing numerous attacks against innocent Iraqi and coalition forces over the past two years. Iraqi forces seized $20,000 worth of Iraqi currency, documents and computer equipment during the operation.

In the other mission, the troops detained seven suspected al Qaeda terrorists. One is allegedly a key weapons supplier who has armed foreign fighters and other terrorist operatives in Iraq. Forces confiscated 77 assault rifles during the mission. “This successful mission is another demonstration of the Iraqi security forces and national government’s resolve to stopping violent criminal elements and ensuring the safety of their people,” a senior coalition advisor said.

Also yesterday, Multinational Division Baghdad troops in the western part of the city found a factory in which explosively formed penetrators, the most deadly form of roadside bomb, were being made. Roughly 300 pounds of homemade explosives and parts were found, in addition to a disassembled anti-tank mine, two rocket-propelled-grenade sights, 14 copper plates and two video cameras.

In other operations over the past few days:

-- First Calvary Division soldiers freed three Iraqi civilians and detained their four kidnappers in a house south of Samarra on July 21.

-- Iraq security forces and U.S. Special Forces detained five individuals suspected of conducting terrorist activities in Mosul during an early-morning operation July 21. Iraqi forces seized five assault rifles, 14 weapons magazines, one chest rig, a bayonet, four cell phones, two soldering irons, numerous electronic components, and three automobiles.

-- A precision air strike destroyed a tanker truck loaded with explosives during Operation Marne Avalanche northeast of Haswah on July 20. An F-16 fighter jet dropped two 500-pound bombs on the truck and destroyed it.

-- Coalition forces killed nine terrorists, detained eight suspected terrorists and uncovered weapons caches during an operation near Muqdadiyah on July 20-21. The ground forces discovered a terrorist safe house hiding a weapons cache of rifles, ammunition, a rocket-propelled-grenade launcher, mortars, assault vests and camouflage uniforms.

“We’re targeting al Qaeda members and leaders no matter where they hide,” Young said. “These terrorists operate with a system of values totally inconsistent with those of the Iraqi people.”

(Compiled from Multinational Corps Iraq and Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force Arabian Peninsula news releases.)

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Multinational Corps Iraq


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