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Coalition Disrupts Al Qaeda in Iraq Operations, Detains 22 Suspects

American Forces Press Service

BAGHDAD, March 5, 2008 – Coalition forces detained 22 suspects today during operations to disrupt al Qaeda networks operating in northern and central Iraq.

In the western part of Ninevah province, coalition forces detained two suspects, one of them an alleged associate of al Qaeda networks in northern Iraq. He reportedly is responsible for the facilitation of finances to networks throughout the Mosul area and is associated with several senior-level foreign terrorist facilitators.

In Mosul, coalition forces captured another alleged associate of the wanted individual. The Mosul suspect reportedly is connected to foreign terrorist facilitation and smuggling networks in the city. Three suspected terrorists were detained in Mosul in addition to the wanted individual.

Also in Mosul, two suspects were detained in an operation targeting an alleged al Qaeda in Iraq associate involved in attacks against coalition forces and connected to Abu Yasir al-Saudi, also known as Jar Allah, the Saudi al Qaeda in Iraq leader killed by coalition forces Feb. 27.

During coordinated operations in Samarra, coalition forces captured an alleged facilitator involved in the city’s al Qaeda in Iraq network. The suspect reportedly is associated with two leaders in the network involved in terrorist military and administrative operations. In addition to the wanted man, the ground force detained two suspects during the operations.

In Baghdad, coalition forces detained three suspected terrorists during operations targeting an alleged associate of the senior al Qaeda in Iraq leader for Baghdad’s southern belt and a financial facilitator with direct ties to senior terrorist leaders in the Baghdad area.

West of the Hamrin Mountains, in Albu Bakr village, coalition forces conducted an operation that began March 2 and ended yesterday, targeting an al Qaeda in Iraq propaganda cell and meeting location. The ground force detained eight suspected terrorists and discovered a cache of weapons and military equipment, including military-style assault vests and equipment belts, signal rockets, grenades, machine-gun magazines, various ammunition and anti-aircraft rounds.

“These operations demonstrate the pressure Iraqi and coalition forces continue to apply against al Qaeda networks in central and northern Iraq,” said Army Maj. Winfield Danielson, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. “Iraqi citizens want a future free from al Qaeda’s indiscriminate violence, and we are working with the Iraqi security forces to help them achieve it.”

(From a Multinational Force Iraq news release.)

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