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Four U.S. Troops Die in Iraq; Insurgents Killed, Captured

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 22, 2005 – Three Marines were killed in two combat operations in Iraq on Oct. 21.

Two Marines assigned to Regimental Combat Team 8, 2nd Marine Division, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward), during a roadside-bomb attack on their vehicle near Amariyah.

The third Marine assigned to Regimental Combat Team 2, 2nd Marine Division, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward), was killed in an explosion near Haqlaniyah.

During the subsequent engagement, Marines killed four insurgents and destroyed a bunker adjacent to their position where an unknown number of insurgents had been firing from.

On Oct. 20 in central Baghdad, a Task Force Baghdad soldier died of a nonhostile gunshot wound. The names of the deceased are being withheld pending notification of the families.

Elsewhere in Iraq, 20 terrorists suspected of sheltering al Qaeda foreign fighters were killed and one was captured during a series of coalition raids on safe houses in Husaybah on Oct. 22.

Coalition forces raided two neighborhoods and discovered two large weapons caches containing small arms, ammunition, rocket-propelled grenades, mortar rounds, explosives, and bomb-making materials to include radios and detonators.

A vehicle bomb also was located near one terrorist safe house. Coalition forces destroyed the bomb, the five safe houses and caches using precision-guided munitions.

Also, during the past 24 hours, the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, partnered with the 3rd Iraqi Army Division, captured five terrorists and nine smugglers. Two are reported senior-level leaders responsible for planning and funding terrorism in the northern area of Iraq.

In the past five days, the two U.S. and Iraqi units have secured and destroyed more than 10,000 pounds of explosives.

Officials report that Tal Afar residents are providing information leading to the capture of terrorists and the discovery of weapons and military caches. During one raid, citizens reportedly applauded Iraqi army and coalition forces as they led captured terrorists away.

Along the Syrian border, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment forces and Iraqi Border Police in western Ninewa captured nine smugglers as they were crossing into Iraq. The men were transporting contraband used to help fund the terrorists. The contraband was confiscated and all the men were transported to a holding facility for further questioning.

In Mosul, multinational forces from 172nd Infantry Brigade (Stryker Brigade Combat Team) uncovered 10 weapons caches and detained 16 suspected terrorists during two operations in northern Iraq on Oct. 17-18.

Soldiers from 4th Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment, detained 16 suspected terrorists and seized a weapons cache during a raid near Rawah along the Euphrates River on Oct. 17. The cache included mortar-aiming stakes, mortar-launching equipment, mortar propellant, and explosive paraphernalia.

The unit's troops also seized nine weapons caches during search operations near Rawah on Oct. 17 and 18. The caches included more than 600 various artillery rounds, more than 700 various mortar rounds, mortar tubes, various rockets, several rocket and rocket-propelled-grenade launchers, over 100 RPG rounds, over 50,000 rounds of small-arms and machine-gun ammunition, machine guns, AK-47 assault and other assault and sniper rifles, more than 800 point detonating fuses, several feet of detonation cord and timed fuses, 80 pounds of TNT, several sticks of PE-4, land mines, fragmentation grenades, blasting caps, 100-kilogram fragmentation bombs, and various projectiles.

In the air over Iraq on Oct. 21, coalition aircraft flew 51 close-air-support and armed-reconnaissance sorties. U.S. Air Force F-16s and F-15s performed air strikes against buildings used by insurgents in the vicinities of Karabala and Husaybah.

Other sorties included U.S. Air Force F-16s and Navy F-14s, which provided close-air support to coalition troops in the vicinities of Hit and Az Zubaydiyah and 12 U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flying missions in support of operations in Iraq.

U.S. Air Force and British Royal Air Force fighter aircraft also performed in a non-traditional ISR role with their electro-optical and infrared sensors.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq and U.S. Central Command Air Forces Forward news releases.)

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