U.S. and Iraqi troops are wrapping up an operation that saw them — under cover of darkness — cordon off and search a restive western district of Baghdad.
Members of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, along with Iraqi police and soldiers, launched Operation United in the early hours on Saturday, U.S. military officials said. The goal was to “capture anti-Iraqi forces and seize weapons caches in the neighborhood of Ameriyah, a hotbed of sectarian violence,” a military news release read.
According to U.S. officials, members of the Iraqi national police’s 5th Brigade, 2nd National Police Division and troops from the 2nd Battalion, 1st Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division carried out the operation. The U.S. troops were from the 1st Battalion, 87th Infantry Regiment.
The police set up a cordon around the entire district of around 150,000 people, with U.S. engineers clearing routes through streets known as spots prone to roadside bombings. The soldiers from both armies then searched through large areas of the neighborhood.
“This operation provided the citizens of Ameriyah visible proof that coalition and Iraqi security forces are concerned about their safety,” Maj. James Crawford, a spokesman for 1st BCT, 10th Mountain Division, said. “We are committed to ridding the area of terrorists and criminal activity.”