American Forces Press Service
March 24, 2008 - Coalition forces in Iraq today killed two terrorists and detained eight suspects during operations targeting al Qaeda in Iraq operatives in the central and northern parts of the country, military officials said. Coalition forces conducted two related operations in the Tigris River Valley. The ground force captured a suspected al Qaeda in Iraq member during an operation west of Samarra and detained another suspected terrorist during an operation in Tikrit. An armed man attempted to attack the coalition troops as they entered the target building in Tikrik. The coalition forces killed the armed terrorist.
During two operations on the west side of Baghdad, coalition forces captured an alleged associate of al Qaeda in Iraq senior leaders and five other suspected terrorists. Another wanted individual engaged the ground force with small-arms fire during the second operation. Coalition forces returned fire and killed the armed terrorist.
In other recent operations:
-- Coalition forces killed an armed insurgent during operations yesterday targeting al Qaeda in Iraq terrorists in the Hamrin Mountains. The suspected terrorist refused to surrender despite warnings from coalition troops, who then engaged the armed man, killing him.
-- Iraqi security forces advised by U.S. Special Forces troops detained six suspected militants during separate anti-insurgent operations March 22. In Baghdad, Iraqi special operations forces detained one suspected militant believed to be the leader of an improvised-explosive-device and explosively formed penetrator cell. One other suspect is being held for questioning. In the northern Hamrin Lake region, northwest of Jalula, Iraqi security forces detained a suspect linked to criminal activity in the region. Bomb-making material was found at the site. In Kut, an Iraqi special weapons and tactics unit detained three suspects linked to local criminal activities.
-- U.S. soldiers detained a suspected terrorist March 21 in Baghdad, using information supplied from a weapons cache discovery that was made in March 2007. At that time, U.S. soldiers with the 1st Infantry Division's 4th Brigade Combat Team seized a munitions cache in Baghdad's West Rashid district. In January, more evidence turned up that linked the suspect to the weapons cache. "His capture shows two points," said Army Col. Allen Batschelet, chief of staff for Multinational Division Baghdad. "Multinational Division Baghdad soldiers are here to protect the Iraqi people, and we will never cease in our efforts to bring terrorists and criminals to justice." Evidence that links criminals and terrorists to previous acts of terrorism and violence generally comes to light two to three times a week, Batschelet said.
-- Iraqi National Police officers seized a munitions cache after receiving a citizen tip in the New Baghdad district of eastern Baghdad. Police from 1st Battalion, 4th Brigade, 1st Iraqi National Police Division, investigated the tip and uncovered seven 107 mm artillery rounds and 80 122 mm artillery rounds. U.S. soldiers transported the contents of the cache for disposal.
-- A suspected al Qaeda in Iraq leader in Kirkuk and three other suspects were detained during a March 20 raid conducted by coalition forces in Kirkuk province. Iraqi citizens provided the information leading to the capture of the suspected al Qaeda leader and other suspects. The tips allowed soldiers from the 10th Mountain Division's 1st Brigade Combat Team to conduct a raid to detain the suspects with minimal impact on Iraqi citizens. The detained suspect and his followers have conducted numerous acts of intimidation against the local populace since 2003. The suspect is believed to be the leader for roadside-bomb operations in Kirkuk province and is linked to the deaths of many innocent Iraqis. "The suspect has brought much fear and death to the people of Kirkuk and to his own people in Hawijah. No longer will it be possible for him to harm innocent civilians," Army Col. David Paschal, commander of 1st Brigade Combat Team, said. "We will continue to hunt down the remainder of the terrorists and bring them to justice."
(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq and Multinational Corps Iraq news releases.)