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IED Triggermen, Suspects Captured; Weapons Caches Found

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, March 25, 2006 – A combined U.S.-Iraqi patrol detained a terrorist near Kirkuk yesterday, and U.S. soldiers captured two improvised-explosive-device triggermen near Balad, Iraq, March 23, military officials in Iraq reported.

In other action, U.S. soldiers found two weapons cache south of Baghdad yesterday, and Iraqi soldiers detained a suspected terrorist and uncovered a weapons cache in Baghdad March 23.

In Kirkuk, soldiers from the 2nd Brigade, 4th Iraqi Army Division, detained a terror suspect yesterday after Bastogne soldiers of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, discovered an IED during a combined combat patrol.

The combined patrol was traveling along a major road outside of Kirkuk when soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, spotted the IED on the side of the road. Soldiers from the two units immediately secured the site, rerouting traffic to a side road. Within minutes of securing the area, the IED detonated, causing no damage to personnel or equipment.

Coalition forces spotted a military-aged male, who lived in a house nearby, fleeing on motorcycle. The patrol quickly detained the suspect, who tested positive for explosive residue.

Combined offensive missions in Kirkuk province, planned and led by the Iraqi army, have netted more than 25 terrorist suspects in the last two days.

Task Force Band of Brothers soldiers captured the two men near Balad before they could detonate an IED they had buried alongside a road leading to the city. Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, noticed the men hiding in the trees along the road. The soldiers investigated and discovered a spool of wire leading to the men's position.

After questioning the men, the soldiers quickly found and secured the IED. The troops also confiscated two AK-47 assault rifles, shovels and the detonating device the men were preparing.

In the Baghdad area action, an Iraqi citizen led soldiers from Multinational Division Baghdad's 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, to a weapons cache, consisting of 16 rocket-propelled-grenade rounds.

Following its discovery, division soldiers began searching the area and found a second cache, consisting of 24 RPG rounds.

In a separate incident south of Baghdad, another Iraqi citizen led soldiers from 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, to a smaller weapons cache.

The Iraqi's directions led soldiers to a weapons cache consisting of nine 60 mm mortar rounds and a Scud missile booster.

In other news, soldiers from 3rd Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division, detained a suspected terrorist at a checkpoint in the Thawra district March 23. The detainee is on the Iraqi army's high-value target list.

Later in Baghdad's Mansour district, soldiers from 1st Battalion, 5th Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division, supported by soldiers from a 4th Infantry Division military transition team, discovered a weapons cache during a cordon and search. The cache consisted of various ammunition, an anti-tank mine, 57 mm shell casings and propane tanks.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)

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