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Goldmine truck in Iraq

Washington, May 23 (Reuters): American troops have seized what appears to be $500 million worth of gold bars from a truck in Iraq, the US army said today.

The 2,000 18 kg bars were seized yesterday at Qaim on the Syrian border in western Iraq by soldiers of the 3rd Armoured Cavalry Regiment, the US military’s Central Command said in a statement.

The bars were found by soldiers during “a routine traffic control search” of a Mercedes truck near the border.

Gen. Tommy Franks, who commanded the US-led war against Iraq and the war in Afghanistan, will step down as US Central Command chief in the coming weeks and retire from the military this summer, defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld said yesterday.

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