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Coalition Forces Foil Terrorist Attack on Polling Station

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 14, 2005 – A Task Force Baghdad unit patrolling in southern Baghdad immediately responded to a terrorist mortar attack on a polling site Oct. 13 by returning fire to drive the terrorists away, military officials reported today.

The soldiers from 1st Battalion, 108th Armor Regiment, also provided medical care to two Iraqi civilians, including one child, who suffered minor injuries when the terrorist rounds detonated, officials said.

"I am not surprised that the terrorists would target the innocent people of Iraq," said Maj. Liston Edge, an operations officer for the 48th Brigade Combat Team. "I am just proud that we are able to provide support to their security forces in such an efficient way."

Also on Oct. 13, an Iraqi Army platoon captured a suspected terrorist leader during a raid against a terrorist safe house in eastern Baghdad.

The terror suspect was wanted for planting three roadside bombs near a mosque, and is thought to have planned other attacks against civilians, Iraqi security forces and coalition Forces, officials said. The suspect also is believed to have used his home as an operations center for terrorist activity in Zafaraniya and Diyala.

"(The Iraqi soldiers) are getting very good at these raids," said Maj. Terry Cook, a U.S. Army officer who works with the Iraqi army. "The entire operation lasted less then 30 minutes."

Iraqi army troops and coalition forces responded Oct. 13 to a report of a car bomb and netted two suspects with a significant amount of cash instead in Hit. Soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 7th Iraqi Army Division, and coalition forces received a tip from locals on a possible car bomb located near a mosque. The vehicle was searched and cleared, and troops had begun searching other vehicles in the area when two men were seen leaving a nearby house.

Troops searched the men and their car and found 3,930,750 Iraqi dinar in their possession. The cash equals about $2,650 in U.S. currency. The individuals were detained for further questioning by authorities.

In other news from Iraq, Iraqi police found and seized a weapons cache Oct. 13 near Kut. The cache contained six 60 mm mortar mines, two anti-aircraft rocket systems, more than 50 pounds of TNT, 20 condensers, two night-vision devices, some detonation cord and a 12-volt battery. The items were delivered to a nearby civil defense station for later disposal.

Coalition aircraft flew 62 close-air-support and armed-reconnaissance sorties Oct. 13 for Operation Iraqi Freedom.

U.S. Air Force F-15s and F-16s, U.S. Navy F-14s, and Royal Air Force GR-4s provided close air support to coalition troops near Basrah, Fallujah, Mansuriyah and Mosul.

Thirteen U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Iraq. Also, Royal Air Force fighter aircraft performed in a nontraditional ISR role with their electro-optical and infrared sensors.

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

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