Sunday, August 08, 2004

WTOPNEWS.com: Iranian Diplomat Reportedly Held in Iraq

WTOPNEWS.com: "Iranian Diplomat Reportedly Held in Iraq
Updated: Sunday, Aug. 8, 2004 - 9:58 AM
BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - Militants in Iraq said Sunday they had taken a top Iranian diplomat hostage, according to video shown on the Arab-language Al-Arabiya television station.
The video showed a bearded man identified as Faridoun Jihani speaking to the camera, though his voice was not audible. The video also showed nine forms of his identification, as well as his passport and a business card identifying him as the 'consul for the Islamic Republic of Iran in Karbala,' a southern Iraqi city.
The kidnappers, who called themselves the 'Islamic Army in Iraq,' accused Jihani of provoking sectarian war in Iraq and they warned Iran not to interfere in Iraq's affairs, according to Al-Arabiya.
The kidnappers did not appear to threaten Jihani and made no demands, according to the report.
Jihani would be the second senior diplomat taken hostage in Iraq in recent weeks. Mohammed Mamdouh Helmi Qutb, an Egyptian diplomat, was abducted July 23 outside a mosque in Baghdad and freed unharmed July 26."

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