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U.S. Says Missing Marine Apparently Safe

8 July 2004 -- The U.S. Embassy in Beirut says it has "credible information" that a U.S. Marine who went missing in Iraq two weeks ago is safe in his native Lebanon.

Embassy spokeswoman Elizabeth Wharton said today that they are working to confirm the information it has about Corporal Wassef Ali Hassoun.

But relatives of the Marine said today they have no news of his whereabouts. His brother said he has no information, no new facts, and no confirmation from either the U.S. Embassy or the Lebanese foreign office.

An Iraqi militant group said on 5 July it was holding the 24-year-old Muslim in a safe place but hadn't killed him after he had promised not to return to the U.S. military.

Hassoun on 3 July was reported to have been beheaded.