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Forces Capture Suspected Iranian Agent, Other Terrorism Suspects

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Dec. 19, 2008 – Coalition forces apprehended a suspected Iranian intelligence agent and an alleged associate, as well as 10 other terrorism suspects, in operations in Iraq over the last two days, military officials reported.

Acting on intelligence information, coalition forces in Qastin, north of Baghdad, targeted an alleged commander of Iranian special operations in Iraq who also is believed to be involved in facilitating training of Iraqi militants at camps operated by Iran’s Republican Guard Corps’ Quds Force.

Coalition forces approached the wanted man’s residence, where he identified himself to forces. He then led forces to an associate at a nearby residence. Both men were apprehended without incident.

Officials said Quds Force is believed to provide direct support to multiple extremist groups in Iraq, and is responsible for weapons being smuggled into Iraq from Iran.

In other operations today:

-- Two suspected al-Qaida in Iraq recruiters were captured in Baghdad, and five other suspected terrorists were detained in a separate operation in the Iraqi capital targeting al-Qaida in Iraq leadership.

-- In Jalula, north of Baghdad, forces detained a suspect believed to be associated with a regional al-Qaida in Iraq courier.

In operations yesterday:

-- Forces in Dawr, north of Baghdad, captured a wanted man believed to be a local al-Qaida in Iraq financier with connections to local leaders of the terrorist organization.

-- Coalition and Iraqi forces captured an alleged al-Qaida in Iraq regional leader in Kirkuk. The suspected terrorist reportedly also is associated with al-Qaida in Iraq propaganda and recruitment efforts in the region. An additional suspect was detained for further questioning.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq news releases.)

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