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U.S. Soldiers Foil Hand Grenade Handoff to Child

American Forces Press Service

CAMP BLUE DIAMOND, Iraq, Feb. 10, 2005 – U.S. soldiers from the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, foiled an attempt by a terrorist to coerce a child into accepting a hand grenade in Ramadi today.

The soldiers, currently assigned to the 1st Marine Division of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, were conducting a patrol in the northeastern sector of the city when they observed a blue 4-door sedan with three military-aged males pull up near their position.

The driver exited the vehicle and approached a child, estimated to be 10 years old. The two exchanged words and the adult gave the child a hand grenade. The child and the adult exchanged possession of the hand grenade several times.

One of them dropped the grenade after U.S. soldiers fired a warning shot in the direction of the terrorist. The child ran away as the adult returned fire with a handgun.

The patrol fired disabling shots into the vehicle to prevent the terrorists from escaping as the adult jumped into his vehicle and attempted to flee the scene. A brief firefight ensued, which resulted in one terrorist being killed and two terrorists being wounded.

The patrol evacuated the wounded to the medical facility at their forward operating base. The unit recovered the grenade from the scene, but was unable to locate the child.

There were no U.S. casualties.

"The incident demonstrates the ruthless disregard that the insurgency has for the citizens of Iraq," said Marine Maj. Phill Bragg, division information operations officer.

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