4 Americans Missing in Iraq

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by tomahawk6, Nov 17, 2006.

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  1. WASHINGTON - A convoy of civilians was hijacked in southern
    Iraq Thursday and up to 14 people were abducted, the U.S. military said. Four Americans were believed to be among the captives, an official said.

    Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said that preliminary reports suggested the convoy included about 19 vehicles.

    An official familiar with the incident said preliminary reports being checked by the military indicated that the attack occurred at a checkpoint near Nasiriyah and that four Americans were believed to have been taken captive.

    The official, who requested anonymity because of the security situation in Iraq, said it appears that some of the convoy drivers had been released, and were being interviewed by the military. He said initial reports suggest that the attack occurred at a checkpoint in a location where normally there is no blockade.

    The convoy was being operated by the Crescent Security Group. The company works mostly in Iraq, and its operations are based in Kuwait.

    Whitman said he had no new details on the attack, adding that British forces were working with Iraqis to determine what happened. U.S. officials are also looking into the incident, according to the official.

    Lt. Col. Christopher Garver, a U.S. military spokesman in Baghdad, confirmed that a convoy was attacked in the southern region of Iraq, but he also provided no other details.

    Italy formally handed over security responsibility of the southern Dhi Qar Province to Iraqi forces in late September, and British troops handed over control of the adjacent southern Muthana province in July.
     
  2. I take it the Convoy was both Unarmed & without Military Escort?
     
  3. No. It was being escorted. By a company called Crescent Security Group. Not very effectively though it would seem. It sure as well won't boost any trade for the company.
    God forbid, but I can't help thinking how many long it will take, before those 4 poor Yanks end up in orange boiler suits, in some sick fcuk's home movie. :x
    God speed a safe return.
     
  4. No. It was being escorted. By a company called Crescent Security Group. Not very effectively though it would seem. It sure as well won't boost any trade for the company.
    God forbid, but I can't help thinking how many long it will take, before those 4 poor Yanks end up in orange boiler suits, in some sick fcuk's home movie. :x
    God speed a safe return.
     
  5. Only hope is that they have been taken by the JAM or Badr Corp rather than AQI, since they were taken in the South, it might not be Orange Jump Suits but a rather large lump of cash that is required.
     
  6. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

    I hope for the best for them; however, it doesn't sound good for them.
     
  7. Look at the photos on their website. Would you want your convoy protected by them?

    That aside, it goes without saying I hope they're released without harm - not just the yanks, but everyone who was abducted.
     
  8. Sunni terrorists or Mehdi Army terrorists their methods are near identical.
    The 4 US civilians would be from Crescent Security I think. Could be a ransom gang too which would be the best case scenario.
     
  9. I hope all of them get out ok (not just the americans)
     
  10. .


    Or Iraqi Police.
     
  11. Not a very dodgy company then..

    not offers not issues
     
  12. not looking to good but hope they are all ok
     
  13. Really do wish them all the best.

    Just don't want to see another orange boiler-suit film noir
     
  14. British troops backed by US gunships have engaged gunmen who may have been responsible for the kidnapping of PMC contractors.

    By WILL WEISSERT, Associated Press Writer
    6 minutes ago

    BAGHDAD, Iraq - British ground forces and U.S. military helicopters fought with gunmen Friday in southern
    Iraq where four American security contractors and their Austrian co-worker were abducted in a convoy hijacking.

    The Austrian was found dead and one of the Americans was gravely wounded, an Iraqi police officer said. The three Americans who were among the five Crescent Security Group employees taken hostage remained missing in the largely Sunni area.

    Nine employees from Asian countries such as India, Pakistan and the Philippines were released by the captors, the company said.

    Capt. Tane Dunlop, a spokesman for British forces who were fighting gunmen in the area where the kidnapping took place, said in a telephone interview from Basra that the hijacking occurred at 1 p.m. Thursday in Safwan, an Iraqi city near the Kuwait border. He said the convoy was coming from Kuwait.

    At dawn Friday, British ground forces and helicopters searched an area of Safwan for gunmen who had attacked coalition forces in the past few days when about 10 of them opened fire from farm buildings, Dunlop said. The British and U.S. forces returned fire, Dunlop said.

    As violence in Iraq continued to spiral out of control, a crisis was brewing for Iraq's Shiite-led government.

    The influential Association of Muslim Scholars called on Sunni politicians to quit Iraq's government and parliament, angered by the government's decision to issue an arrest warrant for the association's leader, Harith al-Dhari.

    Abdul-Salam al-Kubaisi, a spokesman for the association, said the arrest warrant was political cover for "the acts of the government's security agencies that kill dozens of Iraqis every day."

    Al-Kubaisi called for "political groups to withdraw from parliament and the government, which has proven that it is not a national government."

    Sunni Vice President Tariq al-Hashimi also condemned the arrest warrant saying "it is destructive to the national reconciliation plan." In a statement, al-Hashimi urged the government to cancel the warrant immediately.

    Al-Dhari, who is in Jordan, said the arrest warrant was illegal and "proof of the failure and the confusion of the Iraqi government."

    Interior Minister Jawad al-Bolani issued the warrant on Thursday night, declaring on state television that al-Dhari was wanted for inciting terrorism and violence.

    The move is seen as certain to inflame Iraq's raging sectarian violence. The interior minister is a Shiite, while al-Dhari is a Sunni extremist who recently mocked a government offer of reconciliation in return for abandoning the insurgency.

    Al-Dhari, who has been outside Iraq for months, said: "The timing of the warrant came when the Iraqi government felt embarrassed by its failure in security."

    President Bush, speaking Friday in Asia, promised to stand with the embattled government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

    "We'll succeed unless we quit," Bush said. "The Maliki government is going to make it unless the coalition leaves before they have a chance to make it."

    Control of the area where the kidnapping took place had been formally handed to the Iraqi government from British and Italian forces.

    The body of the Austrian was taken to a morgue in the city of Basra, and the wounded American was taken there so he could be transferred to a British military hospital, the Basra officer said on condition of anonymity out of concern for his own security.

    The Austrian and American had been found about 20 miles north of Safwan, where the convoy hijacking took place. Throughout Iraq, similar convoys come under attack daily but they have not resulted in hostage-takings.

    In Vienna, Astrid Harz, a spokeswoman for the Austrian foreign ministry, confirmed that a 25-year-old Austrian man had been kidnapped when the Crescent Security Group convoy was hijacked in southern Iraq on Thursday. She could not confirm that he had been killed.

    U.S. officials could not immediately be contacted about the report that the American had been wounded.

    An Iraqi police officer said the convoy had been stopped at a checkpoint on Thursday by Iraqi men, some of them wearing police uniforms.

    The Crescent Security Group company works mostly in Iraq, and its operations are based in Kuwait. Many of its managers and employees are American.

    A U.S. Embassy official, who refused to be identified because he was not authorized to release the information, said the convoy included 43 heavy trucks and six security vehicles.

    Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said Thursday that preliminary reports suggested the attacked convoy included about 19 vehicles.

    A State Department official informed the family of Paul Reuben, 39, a former police officer from suburban Minneapolis who was working as a security contractor in Iraq, that he was among those captured, his brother, Patrick Reuben, told the Star Tribune newspaper and KSTP-TV in St. Paul, Minn.

    The Iraqi police officer said five gunmen and one British soldier were wounded in the subsequent fighting. But Dunlop could not immediately confirm that. The Iraqi officer spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the media.

    Also in the area, Iraqi police shot and wounded a Briton working for a private security company, Dunlop said. The Iraqi Army, however, said the incident involved a British soldier, who was killed.

    Italy formally handed over security responsibility of the southern Dhi Qar Province to Iraqi forces in late September, and British troops handed over control of the adjacent southern Muthana province in July.