March 2, 2016 / 9:25 AM / a year ago

U.S. forces capture Islamic State operative in Iraq: NYT

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - U.S. Special Operations Forces captured a significant Islamic State operative in Iraq, the New York Times reported on Tuesday, the first suspected raid by a new force sent in recent weeks to target the jihadist group's fighters and leaders.

The newspaper said the unidentified detainee was being interrogated by U.S. officials in a temporary facility in the Kurdish city of Erbil, but the defense officials it cited provided few other details. (nyti.ms/1LwtTTz)

A Pentagon spokesman declined to comment on details of the force's missions but said any detention would be "short term and coordinated with Iraqi authorities."

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said he would not comment because of "operational security reasons."

Carter reiterated that if detentions took place they would be for “a very short time."

“Anything having to do with Iraq would be in partnership with the Iraqi government,” he told reporters at the annual RSA cyber security conference in San Francisco.

Iraqi and Kurdish military spokesmen declined immediate comment.

Reporting by Iraq newsroom; Additional reporting by Andrea Shalal in San Francisco; Writing by Stephen Kalin; Editing by Hugh Lawson and Lisa Shumaker

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