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Al-Qaeda Group Says It Abducted Egyptian Ambassador

Ihab al-Sharif (file photo) 5 July 2005 (RFE/RL) -- The group of Al-Qaeda's front man in Iraq, Abu Mu'sab al-Zarqawi, today claimed responsibility for the 2 July abduction of Egypt's top envoy in Baghdad.

Ambassador-designate Ihab al-Sharif was kidnapped late on 2 July on a Baghdad street.

A statement posted on the Internet and signed by the Al-Qaeda organization For Holy War In Iraq said that "mujahedeen" had kidnapped al-Sharif, who is under their control.

Earlier today, gunmen opened fire on a convoy carrying Pakistan's envoy to Iraq, Younis Khan, in the third attack on a senior diplomat in three days. Nobody was reported wounded.

Pakistan later said it would transfer Khan from Baghdad to the Jordanian capital Amman.

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan today sharply condemned the attacks on foreign diplomats in Iraq.


See also:

Top Egyptian Diplomat Kidnapped In Iraq

For RFE/RL's full coverage of developments in Iraq, see "The New Iraq"