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TWO HOSTAGES FOUND DEAD IN IRAQ

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Two bodies feared to be those of British hostages held in Iraq have been handed over, Foreign Secretary David Miliband has said, on Saturday 06/20/2009.

Mr Miliband said forensic tests were being carried out on the remains to see if they were of two of the five Britons who were captured in Iraq in 05/2007.

IT consultant Peter Moore, from Lincoln, and four security guards were captured by armed militants, called the Islamic Shiite Resistance in Iraq, at the Ministry of Finance in Baghdad in 05/2007.

Security experts understood there had been positive diplomatic moves behind the scenes to free them, including the release of a prisoner whose freedom was being demanded by the hostage-takers (see – Laith al-Khazali ).

Little is known about the identities of the men because of a media blackout during a large period of their captivity. The blackout originally came on the instruction of the hostage-takers who said they did not want publicity.

The militants have released videos of the captives (see – Moore 03.21.09), including one – broadcast on Dubai-based TV station Al-Arabiya, on 02/26/2008 – warning that a hostage would be killed unless British troops withdrew from Iraq.

Peter Moore had been working for American management consultancy Bearingpoint when he was kidnapped, while the other men were contractors employed to guard him.

The names of the four security guards are understood to be Jason, Alan, Jason and Alec Maclachlan.

Little else is known about them, other than that the guard Alan is from Dumbarton in Scotland and at least one other is from South Wales.

The dead hostages were identified as Jason Swindlehurst (L) from Skelmersdale, Lancashire, and Jason Creswell (R) from Glasgow. The kidnappers had previously claimed Jason Swindlehurst committed suicide in 05/2008.

 

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