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Forces Capture Numerous Terrorist Suspects In Iraq

Forces Capture Numerous Terrorist Suspects in Iraq

Coalition forces captured several wanted individuals and dozens of additional suspects during operations over the past several days targeting al Qaeda networks throughout Iraq.

Coalition forces captured a wanted individual in Mosul believed to be a foreign terrorist facilitator associated with senior facilitators operating in and outside of Iraq. The wanted individual reportedly is involved in facilitating supplies and finances for use in attacks against coalition forces.

As the ground force entered the target building, the wanted individual attempted to leave through the back door. Coalition forces engaged to stop his movement, wounding and subsequently detaining him. The individual was treated and transported to a nearby military medical facility. In addition to the wanted individual, six suspects were detained.

"Iraq is still a violent place beset by many challenges," said Navy Capt. Vic Beck, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. "We will continue to conduct operations that diminish al Qaeda's ability to attack innocent Iraqis."

In operations yesterday:

* Coalition forces captured a wanted individual and one additional suspect during an operation in Baghdad. The wanted individual allegedly is involved in al Qaeda propaganda and media operations.

* Coalition forces captured an alleged al Qaeda leader in Taji also involved in Baghdad terrorist networks. Reports indicate he is a close associate of senior terrorists in northern Baghdad. This network is responsible for the majority of car-bombing and improvised–explosive-device attacks in the area and is involved in extortion, intimidation, weapons trafficking and facilitating foreign terrorists. One additional suspect was detained during the operation.

* Coalition forces captured a wanted individual allegedly associated with the al Qaeda network operating in Muqdadiyah and involved in foreign terrorist facilitation. The wanted individual is reportedly an associate of several al Qaeda members previously detained by coalition forces in the Diyala River Valley.

* During operations in Samarra, Beiji and Hawija, coalition forces detained 14 suspected terrorists and wounded one while targeting associates of propaganda and media operations, car-bombing cells, and foreign terrorist and weapons facilitation networks. During the operation in Beiji, the ground force received hostile fire from a building in the target area and returned fire in self-defense, wounding one. The suspect was detained, treated on site and transported to a military medical facility.

* Coalition forces captured a wanted individual and three suspected terrorists during two coordinated operations in Baghdad. The wanted individual is an alleged al Qaeda leader associated with media operations and propaganda.

* Coalition forces captured a wanted individual believed to be an al Qaeda leader in Mosul. He is thought to have ties to other terrorist leaders operating throughout northern Iraq. One of his associates reportedly provides weapons and improvised-explosive-device materials to the cell leaders for use in attacks in the area. In addition to the wanted individual, two other suspected terrorists were detained without incident.

* Coalition forces captured a wanted individual believed to be an al Qaeda cell leader for a terrorist network in the Diyala River Valley. Coalition forces detained two of the wanted individuals' close associates between Nov. 28 and Dec. 5.

* Two suspected terrorists were detained during an operation south of Salman Pak targeting an al Qaeda cell leader involved in facilitating weapons and attacks on coalition and Iraqi security forces.

"Iraqi and coalition forces are targeting terrorists at every level," said Army Col. Don Bacon, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. "The people of Iraq have chosen their future, and al Qaeda is not a part of it."

In operations Dec. 8:

* Coalition forces targeted a suspected associate of an al Qaeda leader south of Bagdad. The network is believed to be involved in planning an attack against coalition forces. As forces approached the area, they observed several armed men emerge from the target building, maneuvering into military style positions into a nearby palm grove. Coalition forces engaged. As the ground force began to clear the area, they saw additional movement from the armed men, to include one that attempted to maneuver away and evade capture. Coalition forces called for supporting aircraft to engage the perceived hostile threat. During the engagements, 10 terrorists were killed. Once the area was secure, the ground force discovered numerous machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades, and several sandbags full of homemade explosive material, which were safely destroyed on site. In addition, two suspected terrorists were detained during the course of operations.

* Coalition forces targeted an al Qaeda member in Diyala River Valley. The targeted individual reportedly is associated with senior terrorist members and involved in attacks against coalition and Iraqi security forces. As coalition forces approached the target, several men emerged and ran into a nearby palm grove. The ground force located one of the individuals and called for him to stop, but he did not comply. Perceiving hostile intent, coalition forces engaged, killing him. Upon clearing the target area, the ground forces discovered a small cache of ammunition.

* Coalition forces conducted an operation targeting an alleged al Qaeda leader in Mosul. Reports indicate the targeted individual has a history of involvement in terrorist activities and has held positions in numerous al Qaeda networks in the city. As the ground force entered one of the buildings in the target area, an individual was injured as he attempted to flee the building. He was treated on site, but died before being transported to a medical facility. In addition, three suspected terrorists were detained on site without incident.

* Coalition forces detained eight suspected terrorists in Samarra while targeting a senior foreign terrorist facilitator.

"We're continuing to take the fight to the enemy," said Army Maj. Winfield Danielson, a Multinational Force Iraq spokesman. "Our operations are diminishing al Qaeda's ability to attack the Iraqi people and the forces that protect them."

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


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