MSNBC News Services
Updated: 4:47 a.m. ET March 23, 2006
BAGHDAD, Iraq - A Briton and two Canadians held hostage in Iraq for almost four months have been freed, British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said Thursday.
Briton Norman Kember, 74, and Canadians James Loney, 41, and Harmeet Singh Sooden, 32, were freed during a military operation in Baghdad involving British special forces.
The men, members of an aid group called Christian Peacemaker Teams, were abducted along with American colleague Tom Fox, 54, in Baghdad on Nov. 26. The previously unknown Swords of Righteousness Brigades claimed responsibility.
The men were shown as prisoners in several videos, the most recent a silent clip dated Feb. 28 in which Loney, Kember and Sooden appeared without Fox. Fox’s body was found March 10 near a west Baghdad railway line with gunshot wounds to his head and chest.
The three were being checked by doctors and were in the care of consular staff. Lisa Glover, British Embassy spokeswoman in Baghdad, gave no comment on their state of health but said they had spoken to diplomats.
Glover declined to say where in Iraq the operation took place or whether there were any casualties or arrests made.