Polish troops end standoff with Iraq militants

WARSAW - A group of about 20 Polish soldiers ended an overnight standoff with militants in Hilla, southern Iraq and returned safely to camp early on Saturday, the Polish military said.

By (Reuters)

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Published: Sat 14 Aug 2004, 12:25 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 1:54 AM

“The incident ended without a single shot fired and everyone is now safely back in base camp,” Zdzislaw Gnatowski, spokesman for the General Staff in Warsaw, told Reuters.

The troops ran into trouble on Friday after going to the aid of Iraqi policemen surrounded by about 250 people loyal to Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr.

They spent the night in a fortified building some 5 km (3 miles) from the main Polish military base in Babylon.

Rapid response forces and helicopters secured the soldiers’ return route, Gnatowski said.

Poland commands a multinational force of 8,000 troops in south-central Iraq, including 2,500 Polish troops.

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