Iraqi Police Kill Insurgent Kingpin in Shootout

Iraqi police killed one of the most wanted
insurgent leaders in the Euphrates River Valley during a Sept. 2
counterinsurgency operation in the city of Rawah, U.S. officials reported.

Sadam Shihab Ahmad had played a key role organizing local
anti-coalition operations, officials said. He also was suspected of involvement in
the beheading of a Rawah policeman earlier this year.

When Ahmad, along with an accomplice, saw Iraqi police approaching
their position in Rawah, the two suspects attempted to flee in a vehicle,
but the police blocked their escape route.

A policeman ordered Ahmad and his passenger to exit the vehicle with
their hands up. Refusing the order, Ahmad pointed an assault rifle at the
policeman, who then fired several rounds at Ahmad, killing him.

Immediately after the shooting, Ahmad's passenger exited the vehicle
and threw a hand grenade at the policeman, but it failed to explode. The
policeman then shot and wounded the suspect. The wounded insurgent was
taken to a U.S. military medical facility, where he was reported to be
in stable condition. The police also detained a third suspect.

The Rawah operation illustrates how the Iraqi police are fast-becoming
a viable law enforcement organization, said U.S. Marine Maj. Lowell F.
Rector, officer in charge of the police transition teams in western
Anbar province.

"The Iraqis are gathering their own intelligence, following up on
leads, executing what they've been taught by coalition forces and are
catching the bad guys," said Rector, a 42-year-old reservist who's a police
officer in Columbus, Ohio.

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