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Coalition Forces in Iraq Kill, Detain Dozens of Terrorists

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 15, 2006 – Coalition forces killed more than 40 terrorists and detained 13 suspected terrorists in various raids May 13 and yesterday throughout Iraq, military officials in Iraq reported.

Coalition forces conducted a coordinated ground and air attack against an enemy safe haven in Yusifiyah yesterday, killing more than 25 terrorists, detaining four, and destroying three safe houses and a vehicle loaded with weapons and ammunition.

Upon initiating the attack in the afternoon, coalition troops immediately killed two terrorists in response to hostile activity from a suspected safe house and an associated vehicle. Once the threat was suppressed by an air strike on both the car - resulting in secondary explosions - and the structure, ground troops searched the targeted areas. The troops found two dead terrorists, detained four suspects and provided medical treatment to three injured civilians.

One adult female and one teenage female were treated for wounds and medically evacuated with their uninjured maternal escort via helicopter to the 10th Combat Support Hospital in Baghdad. Additionally, one girl was treated on-site for a superficial wound to the head. She required no further medical care and remained with her mother.

The terrorists fired at the departing helicopters, including the transport carrying the injured civilians. The ground forces called in close-air support to suppress the threat, and several sorties of fixed and rotary wing aircraft attacked enemy positions and killed about 20 terrorists.

During the fighting, terrorists in a truck tried to penetrate the security perimeter and were engaged by the ground troops. The three enemies who occupied the vehicle were killed. One was wearing a suicide vest and detonated it after he was shot by the ground troops, injuring no one and killing himself.

Elsewhere, coalition forces conducted a series of raids May 13 and yesterday near Latifiyah, killing known terrorist Abu Mustafa and 15 other suspected al Qaeda associates and detaining eight suspects. Abu Mustafa was wanted for his involvement in the shooting down of an AH-64 helicopter earlier this year.

In the evening on May 13, coalition forces initiated four associated raids. The initial raid resulted in the killing of Abu Mustafa and an unknown affiliate, who were located near Latifiyah, a village about 25 kilometers southeast of Baghdad.

Intelligence officials identified several other areas connected to Abu Mustafa's cell members. Coalition troops assaulted three of those sites, located about six kilometers north of where Abu Mustafa had been killed the day before. Upon arrival at the first site, coalition forces engaged more than 15 al Qaeda terrorists who were attempting to establish defensive positions or escape. Coalition forces confirmed 14 suspected terrorists were killed and also discovered Abu Mustafa's body, which had been moved to this new site.

Coalition troops also found several women and children inside the house. Two women and two children were inadvertently wounded by shrapnel. The troops immediately treated the injured. One of the women and one child required no further treatment. After initial treatment for a wound to her abdomen, the second woman, who is pregnant, was medically evacuated to the 10th Combat Support Hospital in Baghdad for additional medical care. The other child, 20 months old, was also evacuated to the hospital with her uninjured mother. All evacuated to the hospital are in stable condition.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)

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