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Mortar Attack Wounds Three Soldiers

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2005 – Three 1st Infantry Division soldiers were wounded when anti-Iraqi forces fired mortars on a patrol base near Samarra on Jan. 23, military officials reported today.

Two of the wounded soldiers were evacuated to Multinational Force medical facilities, where they were reported in stable condition. A third soldier, listed in serious condition, was evacuated to Landstuhl (Germany) Regional Medical Center.

Meanwhile, officials also reported today that Iraqi and multinational forces arrested 19 individuals suspected of violence against Iraqi and multinational forces over the past 48 hours.

Near Kirkuk, 18 of them were detained today. During the arrests Iraqi soldiers and police, along with Task Force Danger soldiers from 1st Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, confiscated two AK-47 assault rifles with two magazines, electrical schematics and identification cards.

In a separate incident west of Tikrit, another individual was detained following an explosion there Jan. 23. Officials said a hand-thrown improvised explosive device caused the explosion.

The detainee tested positive for explosives residue and was transported to a Multinational Force detention facility for processing.

Elsewhere, Iraqi soldiers working with the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force near Fallujah found a 155 mm round and a grenade launcher Jan. 23 during recent daylight patrols of the area.

Also it was reported today that more Special Border Force officers have been deployed to Al Waleed in the Anbar province for border security and terrorist interdiction. The border force will patrol the Syrian border to interdict foreign fighters and terrorists attempting to cross into Iraq.

Military officials state that the border officers are a part of the Department of Border Enforcement, part of the Ministry of Interior.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)

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