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Seven Hostages Freed In Iraq

1 September 2004 -- Seven employees of a Kuwaiti firm taken hostage in Iraq on 21 July were freed today.

Spokeswoman Rana Abu-Zaineh of the Kuwait and Gulf Link Transport Company confirmed that the three Kenyans, three Indians, and an Egyptian are now in the company's custody. The seven appeared on Al-Arabiyah television giving interviews today.

A group calling itself the Secret Islamic Army released a video on 26 August calling on the Kuwaiti firm to cease operations in Iraq. The next day, Abu-Zaineh said the company would stop work in Iraq.

France is continuing efforts today to secure the release of two journalists held by a group calling itself the Islamic Army of Iraq.

The group is demanding that France repeal a law banning overt religious symbols, including Muslim head scarves, from public schools.


For the latest news on Iraq, see RFE/RL's webpage on "The New Iraq".

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