RUSSIAN AMBASSADOR\'S MOTORCADE CAUGHT IN CROSSFIRE

By (04/07/2003 issue of the CACI Analyst)

A Russian motorcade consisting of eight vehicles and carrying 23 diplomats and journalists, including Russian Ambassador to Iraq Vladimir Titarenko, came under fire on 6 April about 20 kilometers outside of Baghdad. The convoy was caught in crossfire between coalition forces and Iraqi troops as it was attempting to evacuate the Russian citizens to Syria. RTR correspondent Aleksandr Minakov, who was riding in the motorcade, reported that three diplomats were wounded, one of them seriously. Minakov said the motorcade came under U.S. fire as it pulled alongside Iraqi defensive positions. He admitted that there were two Iraqi cars in the convoy and said that U.S. fire seemed to be directed at them. At U.S. Central Command in Qatar, U.S. Brigadier General Vincent Brooks told journalists that he has been informed of the incident and an investigation is under way. (Interfax)