Iraqi forces claim arrest of local al-Qaida leader

Iraqi security forces said they arrested the head of an al-Qaida cell in a western Iraqi city on Friday. Acting on a tip-off, soldiers descended on a building in the city of Rawah, 275 kilometers (175 miles) northwest of Baghdad, where they arrested local al-Qaida commander Abu Muhayyam al-Masri, whose name is a pseudonym meaning, "the Egyptian," a Defense Ministry official said. Aides Abu Issam al-Libi, or "the Libyan," and Abu Zaid al-Suri, "the Syrian," were also arrested among nine other members of the cell, said the official, who asked that his name not be used because he was not authorized to speak to the media. The official said al-Suri confessed to being responsible for organizing at least one suicide bombing in Baghdad. He said the raid also netted a large quantity of weapons.