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Crew Safe in Helo Emergency Landing; Hundreds of Terrorists Nabbed

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 22, 2005 – All personnel are safe with only minor injuries after an engine problem forced pilots of a CH-47 Chinook helicopter to conduct an emergency landing this morning south of Samarra, Iraq, U.S. military officials in Baghdad reported today.

Officials of the 42nd Infantry Division dispatched a quick-reaction force to secure the emergency-landing site. The cause of the incident is being investigated, officials said.

Elsewhere, a Task Force Liberty soldier died of injuries sustained in a vehicle accident near Kirkuk at about 2:30 p.m. No further details of this incident were available.

Also in Iraq today, coalition Forces, in conjunction with Iraqi army and Ministry of Interior forces, detained a "substantial number" of suspected terrorists in the western Baghdad district of Abu Ghraib.

In an effort to minimize insurgent activity in western Baghdad, two battalions from the 3rd Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division; two battalions from the 1st Brigade, 1st Iraqi Intervention Force; and three battalions from the 2nd Brigade Special Police Commandos; alongside U.S. soldiers from Task Force 2-14, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, conducted operations in the area.

The combined forces conducted mounted and dismounted patrols and a cordon-and-search operation of suspected terrorist locations across the city.

"Iraqi army and Ministry of Interior forces worked very well together and demonstrated good, solid fundamental skills today," said U.S. Army Col. Mark A. Milley, 2nd BCT commander. "The heavy mix of Shia, Sunni and Kurdish soldiers focused on their common terrorist enemy with great cooperation."

That operation came just days after Polish and Iraqi soldiers nabbed 184 terror suspects and seized weapons parts, ammunition, possible bomb-making materials, and propaganda on May 19 and 20 in Suwaryah, about 50 kilometers northeast of Hilla, officials said.

Multinational Division Central-South's 1st Polish Brigade and the 19th Iraqi Army Brigade conducted Operation Peninsula to round up terrorists and eliminate their base of operations.

Among the items confiscated were parts to various weapons, 6,000 AK-47 rifle rounds and paramilitary clothing.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)

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