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IED Attack North of Baghdad Kills U.S. Soldier

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 1, 2005 – A Task Force Baghdad soldier was killed and another was injured today when an improvised explosive device detonated north of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.

It was the second U.S. combat death in as many days. A Marine assigned to the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force was killed Dec. 31 while conducting security and stabilization operations in Iraq's Anbar province.

Multinational Force Iraq officials provided no further details of the incidents.

In other news from Iraq, 1st Infantry Division soldiers captured three people near Duluiyah early today in a raid conducted to kill or capture an insurgent believed to be responsible for multiple sniper attacks on coalition and Iraqi National Guard forces. The three detainees were taken to coalition detention facilities for questioning.

Multinational Force Iraq forces discovered and cleared 17 improvised explosive devices and eight weapons caches today, and conducted 12 cordon-and-search operations and three raids on suspected insurgent facilities. They detained 116 suspected insurgents in today's operations.

As elements of the 82nd Airborne Division arrived in Mosul to provide enhanced security and stability for the Jan. 30 Iraqi election, multinational forces conducted several cordon-and-search operations in Mosul on Dec 31, netting eight detainees and the discovery of a large weapons cache. The cache contained more than 300 mortar rounds, 30 AK-47 assault rifles and other weapons.

Forces operating in Mosul were called to a Christian church, where an improvised explosive devise was discovered. U.S. Army explosive ordinance disposal team was called in and safely diffused the bomb.

A raid in Khalidiyah, west of Baghdad, resulted in 63 suspected insurgents being detained. A weapons cache consisting of more than 25 rockets, several mortars and other small-arms weapons was discovered near the Abu Ghraib prison. A cordon-and-search operation led to the detention of four suspected insurgents.

Troops in Duluiyah conducted three cordon-and-search operations, yielding five detainees and two small weapons caches. Soldiers also detained one suspected insurgent in Balad.

In Baghdad, a raid netted two suspected insurgents. Multinational forces operating in the city encountered an improvised explosive device during a patrol. The device was disarmed safely, and the person suspected of planting it was apprehended.

On Dec. 31, Multinational Force Iraq units discovered and cleared four improvised explosive devices and five weapons caches, conducted three cordon- and-search operations and six raids on suspected insurgent facilities and detained 122 suspected insurgents and terrorists.

In the town of Ash Shura, multinational forces conducted a cordon-and-search operation Dec. 31 in a suspected terrorist cell area, where they captured 13 people. North of Baghdad the same day, soldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division detained 49 suspects during cordon-and-search operations. Multinational forces operating near Balad detained one suspected insurgent and confiscated a small weapons cache.

Two Iraqi civilians were killed Dec. 31 near Bayji when a suicide car bomb exploded near their vehicle. A Multinational Force patrol near Samarra was attacked Dec. 31. The patrol suffered no casualties and captured 16 insurgents.

Multinational forces operating west of Baghdad conducted searches in northern Ramadi on Dec. 31, detaining three suspects, while additional searches near Husaybah netted 17 suspected insurgents and forces in Fallujah uncovered two weapons caches.

In various Dec. 31 operations in Baghdad, soldiers captured six suspected insurgents and confiscated numerous small-arms weapons and ammunition.

Elements of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit seized three weapons caches during sweeping operations Dec. 30 in southern Sadah. The Marines used intelligence from a previous weapons seizure to conduct cordon-and-sweep operations that resulted in the uncovering of 150 120 mm mortar rounds and numerous small arms.

Meanwhile, one insurgent was killed while attempting to fire a rocket-propelled grenade at Marines manning an observation post near Husaybah. There were no U.S. casualties.

More than 5,000 civilians entered Fallujah on Dec. 30 under the supervision of Iraqi and U.S. forces, while another district was opened for returning residents by the interim Iraqi government. The Jolan district is the fourth district to open within a week. The interim Iraqi government is directing the district-by-district resettlement plan that officials said ultimately will open 18 districts for returning Fallujans.

Humanitarian assistance sites in the city distributed almost 15,000 meals and units of water over the course of the week. Meanwhile, reconstruction efforts continue. Fallujah Sewer Department workers continue to operate pump stations that support the drainage system throughout the city. On Dec. 30, debris removal contractors employed 14 front-end loaders, 46 dump trucks and 188 laborers.

Coordination between the military and the Fallujah Water Department resulted in a plan to return water to the Andalus and Jolan districts. Water Department employees, supported by Iraqi contractors, continue repairing water main breaks near of the Jolan water tower, and the Fallujah Electrical Department is addressing the restoration of electricity to water treatment plants and drainage pump stations.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)

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Related Sites:
Multinational Force Iraq
1st Marine Expeditionary Force
1st Infantry Division
82nd Airborne Division
31st Marine Expeditionary Unit

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