Iraqi officials say they have asked U.S. forces to release six of eight Iraqi female prisoners, but they say the move is not related to the demand of a militant group that kidnapped an American journalist.
The U.S. military has not said whether it would release the six prisoners.
Al Jazeera television aired a video Tuesday from militants holding American journalist Jill Carroll, who was kidnapped January 7 in Baghdad. The abductors threatened to kill Carroll unless all female Iraqi prisoners in U.S. custody were released within 72 hours.
Wednesday, gunmen in Baghdad ambushed an Egyptian-owned telephone company Iraqna's convoy, killing at least six security guards. Officials said two African employees traveling in the convoy are missing and feared kidnapped.Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.