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Iraqi Police Search For Americans Who Went Missing In Baghdad


A major search operation is under way for three Americans who have gone missing in Baghdad.

Iraqi media and officials have said that the three missing Americans have been kidnapped.

Gunmen seized the trio from an apartment on January 16 in Baghdad’s southeastern Dora district, Mohammed al-Karbouli, who sits on parliament's security and defense panel, was quoted as saying by Reuters.

An Iraqi government intelligence official told the Associated Press that the three were kidnapped, along with their Iraqi translator, when they visited the interpreter’s home in the Dora neighborhood.

Police vehicles patrolled Dora's streets on January 18 while residents said two helicopters were seen hovering over the district.

U.S. officials have confirmed three Americans have gone missing in the Iraqi capital.

U.S. State Department spokesman John Kirby says U.S. authorities are "working with the full cooperation of the Iraqi authorities to locate and recover the individuals," after Al-Arabiya television reported that the three were feared to have been kidnapped by “militias.”

U.S. officials did not identify the missing Americans or say what they were doing in Iraq.

Other Iraqi media reports said they went missing on January 15 or 16.

An Iraqi police colonel told AFP that the Americans were kidnapped by militiamen wearing military uniforms.

Shi'ite paramilitary forces, dominated by Iran-backed militia fighters who have helped Iraq battle Islamic State militants, have been accused of abuses including executions and kidnappings.

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, dpa, and Reuters

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