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Kidnapped Iraqi reporter is freed

Muntadhar al-Zaidi released after three days

BAGHDAD — Staffers at the Baghdad HQ of Iraqi satcaster Al-Baghdadiyah celebrated on Monday when kidnappers freed reporter Muntadhar al-Zaidi three days after he disappeared on his way to work.

Iraqi news agency Aswat Al-Iraq said Al-Zaidi, 28, was reunited with his family after a hospital checkup. The agency quoted an unnamed source as saying no ransom was paid for his release.

Looking tired and in good health, Al-Zaidi thanked “all the Iraqi citizens who stood with me. I am grateful to them for their prayers.”

Reporters Without Borders hailed his release, adding, “We must continue to campaign for the 14 other journalists of whom there has been no news since they were kidnapped in Iraq.”

Al-Baghdadiyah is an independent channel that began broadcasting after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq with support from local businessmen.

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