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Militant cell commander arrested

February 20, 2005


BAQUBA, Feb 19: Iraqi security forces on Saturday arrested the alleged commander of an insurgent cell close to Al Qaeda frontman in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, police said.

"Early this morning Iraqi security forces assisted by US forces raided the house of Haidar Abu al-Buwari in western Baquba," said a police spokesman for Diyala province, whose capital is Baquba.

"He is one of the mujahideen princes who works with Zarqawi in the position of cell leader," he said. Police found rocket-propelled grenades, grenades, drugs, computers and a photocopier in the house, he added.

Iraqi security forces also arrested a former high-ranking officer under Saddam Hussein allegedly involved in the insurgency in the northern city of Mosul, said a government statement. "Harbi Abd al-Khudaier Hamudi, 50, also known as Abu Nur, was arrested on February 12," it said. -AFP