Sunday, October 21, 2007

Coalition Forces Target Special Groups Leader, 49 Criminals Killed

Sunday, October 21, 2007
Coalition forces were engaged in a heavy firefight this morning killing an estimated 49 criminals during operations in Sadr City.

The operation’s objective was an individual reported to be a long time Special Groups member specializing in kidnapping operations. Intelligence indicates he is a well-known cell leader and has previously sought funding from Iran to carry out high profile kidnappings.

Upon arrival, the ground force began to clear a series of buildings in the target are and received sustained heavy fire from adjacent structures, to include automatic weapons and rocket propelled grenades, or RPGs. Responding in self-defense, Coalition forces engaged, killing an estimated 33 criminals. Supporting aircraft was also called to engage enemy personnel maneuvering with RPGs toward the ground force, killing an estimated six criminals.

Upon departing the target area, Coalition forces continued to receive heavy fire from automatic weapons and RPGs and were also attacked by an improvised explosive device. Responding in self-defense, the ground force engaged the hostile threat, killing an additional estimated 10 combatants.

All total, Collation forces estimate that 49 criminals were killed in three separate engagements during this operation. Ground forces reported they were unaware of any innocent civilians being killed as a result of this operation.

“We continue to support the Government of Iraq in welcoming the commitment by Muqtada al-Sadr to stop attacks and we will continue to show restraint in dealing with those who honor his pledge. We will not show the same restraint against those criminals who dishonor this pledge by attacking security forces and Iraqi citizens,” said Maj. Winfield Danielson, MNF-I spokesman. “Coalition forces will take the necessary action against these criminals to protect the Iraqi people against future terrorist acts.”

No comments: