Troops Kill 2, Capture 21 in Iraq
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Jan. 3, 2008 Iraqi and coalition forces killed two suspected terrorists and detained 21 others in Iraq over the past three days, military officials said.
In Kirkuk today, coalition forces captured a wanted individual believed to be an improvised explosive device cell leader for an Ansar al Sunna extremist group operating in the city.
Reports indicate the suspect commanded two brothers detained Dec. 31 by coalition forces for their role in IED attacks against troops. Ground forces detained the wanted individual’s brother, who military officials said is a suspected terrorist.
During other operations today in Jalula, Samarra and north of Muqdadiyah, coalition forces detained 11 suspected terrorists while targeting al Qaeda in Iraq associates involved in murder, intimidation and terrorist financing.
In Mosul yesterday, troops captured a wanted individual believed to be associated with an al Qaeda senior leader operating in northern Iraq. The suspect claims to have been involved in attacks against coalition forces and is associated with a foreign terrorist facilitator operating south of Baghdad who was detained Nov. 16, military officials said.
“Coalition forces are working to clear and hold areas where terrorists think they can hide," said Navy Lt. Patrick Evans, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. “We will continue to take the fight to al Qaeda, diminishing their ability to attack innocent civilians.”
In Baqouba on Jan. 1, Stryker Brigade soldiers killed two enemy fighters and detained seven. Three of the detainees are known members of an IED cell operating in the area, military officials said.
Soldiers of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, from Fort Lewis, Wash., conducted the raid in the Baqouba suburb of Burhitz.
“It was a successful operation in that we captured seven detainees, and when we were engaged by anti-coalition forces, our soldiers returned fire and were able to ward off the attack, killing two of the enemy," said Army Capt. Philip Mundweil, the company commander. "The soldiers performed spectacularly in accordance with their training, and the information we gain from the detainees will undoubtedly lead to follow on information that allows us to kill or capture more al Qaeda in Iraq in the future."
Elsewhere in Iraq on Jan. 1, Multinational Division North soldiers received a report that an ambush in Salahuddin province killed one Iraqi police officer and injured six others, including the Salam Iraqi police commander. The report added that three Iraqi National Police officers also were injured in the attack.
Coalition forces evacuated six of the injured to a local hospital and three others to a Multinational Division North medical treatment facility, officials said.
(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq, Multinational Corps Iraq and Multinational Division North news releases.)