militants claim capturing 126 troops

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    Militants claim capturing 126 troops

    BAGHDAD, Nov 18: Unimpressed by US claims that Fallujah has been recaptured and militant power decimated, fighters on Thursday painted a different picture of Iraq's fiercest battle since Baghdad fell more than a year ago.

    A statement by the Shura of the Mujahedin boasted an impressive list of war exploits and trophies.

    The statement claimed guerrillas had shot down two F-16 fighter jets, 11 helicopters, five drones and one Chinook chopper carrying 60 US troops.

    The guerrillas destroyed 11 Abrams tanks, nine armoured personnel carriers and 13 Humvees, said the statement, also claiming that 400 US troops and 140 Iraqi government soldiers were killed.

    Another 126 US soldiers had been captured, the statement claimed, as well as 123 Iraqi soldiers and even 15 British troops, the statement claimed. But the surrender of a US commander and 50 of his men, claimed by the statement, who are now said to be fighting alongside the resistance, remains one of the most under-reported developments of the Fallujah battle.

    According to the US military, the enclave has been largely wrested from the resistance and some 1,200 guerillas have been killed since the massive assault was launched on Nov 8
 
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