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Coalition Forces in Iraq Capture Alleged Terrorist Scout

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 28, 2008 – Coalition forces in Iraq today captured a suspected terrorist scout during operations in the Risalah area of Baghdad, military officials said.

The detainee reportedly conducted reconnaissance missions to aid insurgent attacks on coalition forces. He reportedly is skilled in intelligence-gathering, computers and forging documents. The detainee also is reported to be an associate of Iranian-trained criminal-element leaders involved in attacks on coalition forces.

“We will continue to target any group with followers that commit hostile actions and oppose security and stability in Iraq,” said Navy Cmdr. Edgar Buclatin, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. “Each time we capture one of these terrorists, it brings us one step closer to a secure future for Iraq.”

In Baqouba today, coalition forces captured a wanted individual linked to an al Qaeda in Iraq suicide improvised-explosive-device network operating in Diyala province. Three other suspected terrorists also were detained.

Near Mosul today, coalition forces detained another suspected terrorist while targeting an alleged associate of an al Qaeda in Iraq senior leader formerly responsible for terror networks in northern Iraq.

Yesterday, coalition forces captured an alleged al Qaeda in Iraq operative east of Tikrit near the Hamrin Mountains. The detainee allegedly served as an interrogator at a terrorist prison and training camp and reportedly bought weapons brought terrorists into the area. Twelve other suspected terrorists also were captured during the operation.

In Jan. 26 operations:

-- Coalition forces detained one suspected terrorist while targeting an alleged leader for the network in east Mosul. “Iraqi and coalition forces will continue to target, disrupt and eliminate terrorist networks conducting attacks against the Iraqi people,” said Army Maj. Winfield Danielson, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman.

-- A concerned local citizens security group leader was killed in northern Baghdad when his car exploded from explosives planted inside the vehicle. “This was a cowardly and desperate act executed by terrorists bent on derailing reconciliation efforts and progress in an area that has seen remarkable progress as a result of cooperation and resolve on the part of local Iraqi leaders and citizens,” said Army Col. Todd B. McCaffrey, commander of the 25th Infantry Division’s 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team. “Those leaders stand today resolute in their rejection of these acts of violence.”

-- Concerned local citizens in Arab Jabour discovered six improvised explosive devices and a weapons cache. The weapons cache consisted of 30 60 mm mortars, seven 57 mm projectiles, four 122 mm projectiles, two 107 mm rockets, an 81 mm mortar, five jugs of homemade explosives, two 57 mm mortars rigged as improvised explosive devices and 200 large-caliber machine gun rounds. The cache was turned over to U.S. troops for disposal.

-- Later that day, concerned local citizens turned over three IEDs to U.S. forces. Two were 57 mm mortars rigged with detonation cord and filled with high explosive. The third IED was a two-liter bottle filled with explosive. In a third find the same day, concerned citizens found three more IEDs consisting of 57 mm projectiles filled with an unknown explosive rigged with detonation cord. All six IEDs were destroyed.

In Jan. 25 operations:

-- Coalition forces killed three terrorists and detained one suspect during operations to disrupt al Qaeda networks operating along the Tigris River Valley. Coalition forces killed three armed terrorists during a firefight southwest of Samarra. Multiple machine guns, a pistol and two barrels of ammunition were found. In Tikrit, coalition forces captured the alleged senior leader for the al Qaeda in Iraq network in the city.

-- U.S. soldiers uncovered two large caches west of Beiji after a helicopter crew spotted multiple white bags covered by tarps and blankets. When the soldiers arrived, they discovered two different sites where tarps were used to cover the caches. The first cache contained about 60, 50- kilogram bags of a substance used in making homemade explosives. The other cache had nine 50-kilogram bags. The other site also housed various types of plastic explosives, anti-tank mines, an improvised platter charge, a suicide vest packed with TNT and miscellaneous detonation wire and remote detonation devices.

-- Concerned local citizens in Arab Jabour turned in numerous improvised-explosive-device components and a munitions cache to U.S. troops. The Iraqis found 16 pressure-plate switches and numerous blasting caps used to make roadside bombs. The confiscated weapons cache consisted of 340 57 mm projectile fuses, three 57 mm projectiles and 500 machine-gun rounds.

On Jan. 24, Iraqi civilians helped Iraqi and coalition security forces find several large munitions caches northeast of Ramadi. Acting on tips from local citizens, Iraqi and U.S. soldiers found four caches, including the largest cache found in the Thar Thar region in 2008. The four caches included 2,550 pounds of homemade explosives, 10 pounds of plastic explosives, three mines, 1,500 feet of detonation cord, two mortar tubes, more than 300 rocket-propelled-grenade warheads, six 120 mm mortar rounds, four 107 mm rockets, and a heavy machine gun. One cache of RPG rounds and mortars was found buried in a large water container in an abandoned sheep pen. Based on its location, officials said, that cache could have been used to supply insurgents in three provinces with munitions.

Also on Jan. 24, Iraqi security forces advised by U.S. Special Forces soldiers uncovered two weapons caches in separate operations. One cache discovered near Kut contained 321 anti-personnel mines, two 155 mm artillery rounds and a 120 mm mortar round. In the village of Shawq Sha Alan, Iraqi and U.S. soldiers found a rifle, an RPG launcher with sight, two RPG rounds with boosters, three hand grenades, two machine guns, a flare gun, two shotguns, two pistols, 150 heavy machine gun rounds, 800 light machine gun rounds, 250 AK-47 assault rifle rounds, and two boxes of propellant charges.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq and Multinational Corps Iraq news releases.)

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Multinational Corps Iraq
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