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Spanish AP Photographer Kidnapped in Gaza


Palestinian security officials say they are searching for a Spanish photographer kidnapped by gunmen in Gaza City early Tuesday.

The office of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned the abduction and demanded the immediate release of Emilio Morenatti, a photographer working for the Associated Press.

A spokesman for the Hamas-led Palestinian government issued a similar condemnation and said the act violates Palestinian national interests. He vowed the government will do all it can to ensure Morenatti's release.

Gunmen abducted Morenatti in Gaza City as he left an apartment building to get into an AP car.

The driver of the car says the four masked gunmen restrained him and shoved Morenatti into a white Volkswagen and drove away. No one has claimed responsibility.

Morenatti, 37, is from Jerez, Spain, and has worked for AP since 2004. He has been based in Jerusalem for a year and a half after spending a year covering the conflict in Afghanistan.

Several foreign journalists and aid workers have been kidnapped in Gaza in recent months. Palestinian militants have released all the foreign hostages unharmed, usually within hours or days.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters and AFP.

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