Navy Begins Investigation Into Iraqi Soldier's Death
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Jan. 2, 2007 Naval Criminal Investigation Command has launched an investigation into a Dec. 30 incident in which an Iraqi soldier was killed during an altercation with a Marine at a post at the Fallujah Government Center, Multinational Force Iraq officials announced.
The Marine, assigned to 1st Battalion, 24th Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 5, has been assigned to administrative duties. The Iraqi soldier was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 1st Iraqi Army Division.
The Marines and Iraqi soldiers from both units have manned combined security posts since arrival of the Marine unit several months ago.
"Marines and Iraqis from the two units continue to live, eat and fight alongside each other," said Marine Lt. Col. Bryan Salas, a coalition spokesman. "This will not impact our mission to continue the transition of the security responsibility to the Iraqi Army."
Seven hundred Iraqi police, 3,000 Iraqi soldiers, and about 300 Marines are operating in Fallujah, officials said. This compares to March 2005, when 3,000 Marines and only 300 members of the Iraqi security forces were serving there.
(Compiled from a Multinational Force Iraq news release.)