Two American Contractors, One Soldier Killed in Iraq
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, March 13, 2005 U.S. Embassy officials in Baghdad, Iraq, confirmed today that two American contractors were killed March 12 when an improvised explosive device exploded next to their vehicle on the road to Hilla.
The two individuals were employees of Blackwater Security Consulting. Another American was injured in the incident and is being treated at a military hospital in Baghdad's International Zone. Officials said his injuries are not life threatening.
A Task Force Freedom soldier was killed by small-arms fire in Mosul at approximately 8:30 p.m. on March 11. No further details on this incident were available. The names of the contractors and the soldier killed are being withheld pending notification of the families.
In other news from Iraq, Iraqi security forces and multinational forces from 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, a Stryker Brigade Combat Team, detained a total of 11 suspected terrorists during operations in northern Iraq today.
· Troops with the 3rd and 4th Company, 23rd Battalion Iraqi Intervention Force, detained seven people suspected of making improvised explosive devices during a cordon-and-search operation in western Mosul.
· Troops from the 1-24th Iraqi Intervention Forces and soldiers of the 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, detained four people suspected of terrorist activity during a cordon-and-search operation in eastern Mosul.
· The 1-24th IIF and 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry also confiscated a number of explosives components at the location where the individuals were detained. No injuries among Iraqi or coalition forces were reported in either incident.
On March 12, forces from 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division detained a total of 19 suspected insurgents and confiscated a number of weapons and munitions during operations in northern Iraq.
· Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment detained eight individuals suspected of insurgent activity in southwestern Mosul. One of those individuals led the soldiers to a number of insurgent weapons, including more than 90 mortar fuses, several hundred rounds of ammunition, mortar systems, several mortar rounds, a rocket-propelled-grenade launcher, RPG rounds and 100 feet of detonation cord during the mission.
· During a raid in western Mosul, soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry detained four more individuals suspected of insurgent activity.
· In Mosul, soldiers from 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment detained four individuals suspected of insurgent activity during a cordon-and-search operation.
· Soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, 14th Cavalry Regiment detained three more suspected insurgents while patrolling in Mosul. All suspects are in custody, and no injuries to multinational forces were reported from these incidents.
Soldiers from 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division also discovered three large weapons caches during operations in northern Iraq the same day. The cache was discovered by soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry while on patrol in western Mosul.
The cache was found in two vehicles known to belong to terrorists and included RPG launchers and rounds, sniper rifles, machine guns, hundreds of rounds of machine gun ammunition, pistols, and various improvised-explosive-device equipment.
Multinational force soldiers also discovered two caches during a cordon-and-search operation in Tal Afar. The caches included several mortar rounds, a mortar tube, an RPG trigger and warhead, and several artillery primers and fuses. All weapons and munitions were confiscated for future destruction.
Elsewhere in Iraq, more than 2,900 Iraqi soldiers graduated today as part of the Direct Recruit Replacements Program at Kirkush Military Training Base.
These graduates, who all have prior military service, spent three weeks in basic-skills refresher courses with concentrations in traffic control points, local security patrols and fixed-site security. The soldiers will be assigned throughout Iraq to fill vacancies.
(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)