Thursday, March 23, 2006
Three men, James Loney, 41, and Harmeet Singh Sooden, 32, both from Canada, and Norman Kember, 74, of Britain were rescued today by British SAS and Canadian JTF2 Special Forces in Western Baghdad. Major General Rick Lynch, a spokesman for the US military commented on how the rescue was initiated: “We detained two suspects this morning, the detainees gave us intelligence that led us to the rescue of the three hostages.”
The three men are part of a Chicago based pacifist group entitled Christian Peacemaker Teams. The organization opposes the presence of foreign troops in Iraq and has members in Iraq to investigate detainee abuse by coalition forces. A fourth member of their group, Tom Fox, an American, was found shot and killed in Baghdad on March 10th.
The activists had been held since November 26th, 2005. The group Swords of Righteousness Brigades claimed responsibility for the kidnapping. After their rescue, both Canadians required medical attention, according to British Foreign minister Jack Straw.
== Sources ==
Kirk Semple. "3 Western Aid Workers in Iraq Rescued in Military Operation" — New York Times Online, March 23, 2006
Ross Colvin. "Aid workers freed in Iraq" — Reuters, March 23, 2006
Aamer Madhani and Charles Sheehan. "Activists rescued in Iraq" — Chicago Tribune, March 23, 2006
Sinan Salaheddin. "Peace activists freed as Iraq killings climb" — The Standard, March 24, 2006