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Mon, May 15, 2006

Military Confirms Two Lost In Shootdown Of US Helicopter In Iraq

Insurgents Claim Four Helos Downed In Fighting Near Yusifiya

The US military said Monday that Iraqi insurgents shot down a US helicopter Sunday during clashes near the village of Yusifiya, south of Baghdad, killing two soldiers. The area is a stronghold for Sunni Arab insurgents, who have used the village as a staging area for suicide attacks in Baghdad.

The military provided no further details about the downing. A US AH-64 Apache helicopter (file photo of type, above) was shot down in the same area April 1, also killing the two pilots onboard.

The Associated Press reports The Mujahedeen Shura Council -- a coalition of insurgent groups that includes al-Qaeda in Iraq -- claimed responsibility for the downing, in a statement posted on its website.

The group also claimed that it had shot down four helicopters Sunday -- although that has not been verified.

FMI: www.army.mil

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