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U.S. Forces Assist Iraqis in Operations

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Sept. 15, 2009 – U.S. forces assisted their Iraqi counterparts in two recent operations in Iraq, military officials reported.

In Baghdad yesterday, elements of an elite Iraqi counterterrorism force, along with U.S. forces advisors, arrested two suspected terrorists under a warrant issued by the Central Investigating Court of Karkh.

The suspects allegedly are affiliated with a terrorist network that conducts roadside-bomb attacks against the Iraqi army.

In Ninevah province Sept. 13, U.S. forces assisted Iraqi forces after an Iraqi army patrol came under fire by suspected foreign fighters near Tal Abtah. Three enemy fighters and two Iraqi police officers were killed, and one suspected terrorist was captured.

Officials said an Iraqi patrol came under small-arms attack from a truck and began pursuit as nearby U.S air and ground forces were called to assist. The combined forces used nonlethal fire in an attempt to stop the vehicle, but the truck’s occupants fired on the U.S. helicopter supporting the mission.

The helicopter crew returned fire, disabling the vehicle and killing one of the occupants. Ground forces detained another occupant who tried to flee from the truck. He identified himself as a foreign fighter, a claim that is under investigation, officials said.

While searching for another suspect who fled from the vehicle, U.S. and Iraqi forces received small-arms fire from two individuals believed to be connected to the attack. Two Iraqi police officers and the two attackers were killed in the firefight.

U.S. and Iraqi forces searched the attackers’ vehicle and found numerous weapons, including rocket-propelled grenades and hand grenades.

(Compiled from Multinational Corps Iraq news releases.)

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