Al-Zarqawi Said to Survive Airstrike

When Iraqi police and 4th Infantry Division troops arrived at the rubble of the safe house that was the target of a U.S. air strike, al-Qaeda leader Abu Mauswab al-Zarqawi was still alive, a top level spokesman for U.S. military forces in Iraq said Friday.

Maj. Gen. Bill Caldwell says the police and troops found Zarqawi still alive Wednesday in the rubble of the house on which Air Force pilots had dropped two 500-pound bombs.

He says after the 4th Infantry Division troops arrived, the militant tried to "turn away" and "mumbled a little something" and soon died.

Iraqi police and 4th ID troops assigned to Multinational Division Baghdad, North, stood by during the air strike Wednesday in case anyone survived the air strike or in case a firefight erupted in the aftermath of the bombing, Caldwell said Wednesday.

The FBI is performing DNA analysis on the Zarqawi’s remains, although his identity was confirmed through fingerprints just hours after the air strike.

Samples from the six bodies in the safe house have been delivered to the FBI crime laboratory in Quantico, Va.

Zarqawi, his spiritual adviser, and four others died in the bombing, including a woman and a child.

The samples were flown on military aircraft to the Washington-area facility.

An FBI spokesman now says the samples will be compared with evidence collected from other locations.

It had said earlier that the sample would be compared with a different DNA sample from Zarqawi for comparison. The results are expected in three days.


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