Iraqi forces kill three Libyan `Christmas bombers`

Iraqi army special forces killed three Libyans allegedly planning suicide bombings ahead of Christmas in a raid today in the northern city of Mosul, a defence ministry spokesman said.

Last Updated: Dec 20, 2010, 22:10 PM IST

Kirkuk (Iraq): Iraqi army special forces
killed three Libyans allegedly planning suicide bombings ahead
of Christmas in a raid today in the northern city of Mosul, a
defence ministry spokesman said.

"Special forces from the Second Brigade in Mosul
killed three Libyan suicide bombers in an operation," acting
on a tip-off, Major General Mohammed al-Askari said.

The soldiers raided a house in southern Mosul and came
under attack with hand grenades, sparking a clash in which the
three "terrorists" were killed, he said.

Security forces found three explosive vests, six hand
grenades, a pistol and documents indicating the men had
entered Iraq at the weekend, he said. The Libyans were
planning to carry out suicide attacks ahead of Christmas.

Forty-four Christian worshippers, two priests and
seven security forces personnel were killed on October 31 as
gunmen seized a Baghdad cathedral and in an ensuing shoot-out
when it was stormed by troops.

The Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), an al Qaeda
affiliate, claimed responsibility for the attack and warned
that Christians everywhere were henceforth "legitimate
targets."

Mosul and surrounding Nineveh province remain one of
the most violent areas of Iraq, and the home of a sizable
Christian community.

PTI