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WAR: 10 Turkish Hostages Freed in Iraq

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posted on Oct, 12 2004 @ 03:39 AM
Ten Turkish hostages have been released in Iraq according to the countries Foreign Minister. The 10, employees of the construction company VINSAN are reported to be at the companies office in Baghdad. Al-Jazeera broke the story yesterday, but this is the first independent confirmation of the news.< br /> ANKARA, Turkey - Turkey"s foreign minister confirmed Tuesday that 10 Turkish hostages had been freed by kidnappers in Iraq.

Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said 10 employees of the Turkish construction company VINSAN were released and that their families were notified of their release.

A foreign ministry official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the workers arrived in the Baghdad office of the VINSAN company Tuesday morning and met with Turkish Embassy officials.

Al-Jazeera television had reported the release of the 10 hostages on Sunday but Gul"s announcement was the first confirmation that they were free.

An Islamic group, the Salafist Brigades of Abu Bakr al-Siddiq, had claimed responsibility for kidnapping the Turkish workers and had demanded that VINSAN end its operations in Iraq.

Earlier this month, the Ankara-based VINSAN announce it was halting operations in Iraq.

VINSAN was one of 21 international companies taking part in a $160 million road tender in Iraq.

Insurgents in Iraq have kidnapped more than 150 foreigners in their campaign to drive out coalition forces and hamper reconstruction. Most have been kidnapped for ransom and freed unharmed, but dozens have been killed by their abductors.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

The Salafist Brigades of Abu Bakr al-Siddiq had claimed responsibility for the kidnapping and had demanded that VINSAN withdraw from Iraq. While the company had indicated that it would. Over 150 foreign nationals have been kidnapped in Iraq. Some have been held for ransom, other have been executed by their captors.

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