Subscribe

"Sons of Iraq" in Kirkuk helped uncover several weapons caches on April 15, officials say.

Meanwhile, American and Iraqi officials met to discuss issues raised in the Kirkuk area about the payment of "Sons of Iraq" members and their future employment.

Members found one of the weapons caches while exploring an area where insurgents had been active. They notified the 15th Iraqi Army Brigade, which found another cache, officials say.

Company B, 1st Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team was called upon to search the area with heavy-duty metal detectors and dogs. They discovered yet more caches nearby.

The caches contained 122 mm mortars, bombs, 100 mm armor-piercing rounds, 60 pounds of bulk propellant, 68 mm rockets, 7.62 mm ammunition, 120 mm mortars, 99 mm armor-piercing rounds, 105 mm projectiles, 122 mm projectiles, more than 169 fuses and other items. The weaponry and munitions were blown up.

The caches were placed near a road to allow insurgents easy access, according to a news release issued by Multi-National Corps—Iraq.

Two people who owned the farm where the weapons were found have been detained and remain in custody while warrants are processed, officials say.

The U.S. and Iraqi leaders met April 18 to discuss issues raised by Sons of Iraq leaders about pay problems and concerns about members finding jobs. The Iraqi government has taken over from the United States payment of the groups, which have been credited with helping to calm violence in the country.

But ultimately the government is expected to phase out the groups, and has promised to hire the members either in the security forces or find them other careers.

"The Iraqi government will find jobs for these [Sons of Iraq]," said Maj. Gen Abd al-Amir al-Zaydi, commanding general of the 12th Iraqi Army Division.

"The key for us is helping [the Iraqis] any way we can so we can achieve the ultimate goal, which is finding these guys employment," said Gen. John Johnson, deputy commanding general of operations for Mult-National Corps—Iraq.

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign-up to receive a daily email of today’s top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign up