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Militants in Iraq Free 10 Turkish Hostages - 2004-10-12


Ten Turkish construction workers held hostage by militants in Iraq have been released.

Turkey's Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul told reporters in Ankara that the men arrived in Baghdad Tuesday, and that their families have been informed of their release.

The men were abducted by an Islamic group, the Salafist Brigades of Abu Bkr al-Siddiq, which demanded that the Turkish construction company the men worked for stop doing business in Iraq.

The Ankara-based company (VINSAN) announced earlier this month that it was halting its Iraq operations.

On Monday, another militant group claimed it had beheaded a Turkish hostage and his Iraqi translator because they worked with U.S. forces.

The Al Jazeera television network aired footage of a video purported to be from an al-Qaida-linked group (Army of Ansar al-Sunna) that showed masked men holding the two hostages.

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