MOSUL, Iraq - A senior U.S. commander in Mosul appeared on a local television talk show May 17, refuting charges that U.S. forces fire indiscriminately on local civilians.

"I have received similar reports about us doing random shooting and this is absolutely not true," said Col. Gary Volesky, the commander of 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, on Al Mosulia, a Mosul news agency station.

As a method of self-defense, U.S. Soldiers engaged enemy grenade throwers with small arms fire during recent attacks on joint Iraqi Security and Coalition forces patrols.

"Enemies of the nation continue to attack your Iraqi Security Forces and Coalition forces without regard to civilians who are ultimately killed during these attacks."

Volesky was very clear that his goal is to protect the lives of innocent civilians and to continue security and reconstruction efforts in the region.

"We are going to continue to work with the Iraqi Security Forces to stop these enemies of the nation and to bring a brighter future to the people of Mosul and Ninewa province," said Volesky.

Volesky discussed other aspects of the security situation and the rule of law in Ninewa province on the program.