Coalition Troops Kill Five, Detain 29 in Iraq Raids
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Sept. 25, 2007 Coalition forces killed five terrorists and detained 29 suspects during a series of anti-insurgent operations conducted across Iraq today, officials reported.
-- Coalition troops captured the alleged associate of a senior leader linked to al Qaeda in Iraq’s Baghdad-area car-bombing network during a raid conducted south of Musayyib. The suspect also is suspected of ferrying al Qaeda in Iraq leaders throughout the region. Four other terrorists were killed in the engagement.
-- At a nearby location, coalition forces engaged and killed another terrorist. Seven additional suspected terrorists were detained during the operation.
-- Coalition forces captured four suspected terrorists in a separate operation in southern Baghdad. One of the detainees is linked to the al Qaeda in Iraq chief of southern Karkh. Intelligence reports indicate the chief is a key car-bombing facilitator in Baghdad who provides money, vehicles and weapons to numerous insurgent cells in the southern belt of the city.
-- Coalition forces in central Iraq captured five suspected terrorists during three operations targeting al Qaeda in Iraq operatives. Two of the detainees are believed to be involved in attacks against coalition forces.
-- Coalition forces in Bayji captured three suspected terrorists during a raid targeting an al Qaeda in Iraq member believed responsible for coordinating terrorist meetings in the Tigris River Valley.
-- Coalition forces captured two suspected al Qaeda-affiliated terrorists during an operation in Mosul. One of the detainees is believed to be an al Qaeda in Iraq cell leader and is suspected of helping senior al Qaeda leaders move about Iraq.
“We will continue to dismantle the terrorist networks that threaten the security of Iraq and our forces,” said Army Maj. Winfield Danielson, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. “The people of Iraq have chosen their future; Iraqi and coalition forces will ensure al Qaeda in Iraq stays out of their way.”
Also today, coalition troops captured an Iraqi suspected of terrorist activity and detained six other suspects during operations in Baghdad. Intelligence indicates the detainee was a “special groups” member who specialized in the movement of weapons throughout Iraq for the terrorist network.
The man was reported to have ties to several special groups senior leaders, as well as contacts with Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force members. Intelligence information led coalition forces to an area were they detained six other suspected terrorists. A vehicle that tested positive for explosive material was destroyed.
“Special groups members, working with support from Iran, are criminals who jeopardize the security and safety of Iraqi citizens,” said Maj. Brad Leighton, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. “Their IEDs often kill civilians; their mortar rounds often hit residential areas; and they attack from residential areas, placing residents at risk when Iraqi and coalition security forces defend themselves.”
In other news, Iraqi security forces with U.S. Special Forces advisors detained 12 suspected insurgents during a series of early-morning raids across Iraq yesterday.
-- Iraqi forces seized an al Qaeda-in-Iraq key leader and four suspected operatives near Tal Afar.
-- Iraqi special operations troops in Baghdad detained a suspected extremist cell leader and four other suspects. The cell is responsible for improvised explosive device and mortar attacks against Iraqi and coalition forces in the Baghdad area.
-- Members of 6th Iraqi Army Scouts in Baghdad detained a suspected extremist “special groups” commander thought to be responsible for conducting explosively formed-penetrator, mortar and improvised-explosive-device attacks against Iraqi and coalition forces in Kamaliya and Sadr City. The terror group is suspected of murdering Sunni citizens and of conducting a March 22 IED attack and a December 2006 mortar attack against a coalition base in Baladiyat.
-- Another suspected extremist believed to have led an assassination cell that murdered an Iraqi officer was detained in Diwaniyah by members of 8th Iraqi Army Scouts. The detainee also is suspected of distributing armor-piercing explosives and roadside bombs to other insurgent cells in the area.
In earlier operations:
-- An Iraqi and U.S. raid Sept. 23 resulted in the deaths of a terrorist cell leader and a second insurgent in a remote area south of Qaim. The assault force raided a local quarry where a terrorist cell leader was killed by an Iraqi servicemember after the terrorist tried to retrieve an unexploded hand grenade he had thrown at pursuing forces. A second insurgent took his own life by detonating a suicide vest. The deceased al Qaeda in Iraq cell leader was suspected of overseeing a network responsible for a series of attacks against Iraqi and coalition forces throughout western Iraq over the past two years. One other suspected insurgent was detained during the raid. Four assault rifles, 600 rounds of ammunition, one hand grenade, one rocket launcher, one bomb, two assault vests, six improvised explosive device pressure strips and various documents were seized.
-- Iraqi and coalition forces in Baghdad’s Rashid District uncovered a number of roadside bombs and captured 18 suspected insurgents after three days of Operation Dragon Talon II-affiliated raids that ended Sept. 23. Some 67 suspects have been captured since the operation began Sept. 16. Of those detained, 13 individuals are believed to be leaders, organizers or financiers of various terror cells in the area. Seventeen roadside bombs have been found and destroyed by Iraqi and coalition forces with the aid of resident-provided tips.
-- A concerned Iraqi citizen led U.S. soldiers of Company D, 2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, to a weapons cache south of Zaidon on Sept. 22. The cache contained 11 120 mm mortar rounds, eight anti-personnel mines, a collection of ammunition of various calibers and seven rockets. The weapons, ammunition and bunker were destroyed.
(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq and Multinational Corps Iraq news releases.)