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Turkish Firm to Withdraw From Iraq

A Turkish company said Sunday it was withdrawing from Iraq a day after Iraqi militants threatened to behead its employee unless it ceased operations in the country, the Anatolia news agency reported.

The group, calling itself the Islamic Resistance Movement - Al-Noaman Brigades (search), released a tape showing a bearded man, purported to be the Turkish truck driver, sitting in front of a black banner bearing the group's name in gold Arabic characters.

The group threatened to behead the Turk unless his employers and their Kuwaiti contractor end operations in Iraq. The videotape was aired on Al-Arabiya television on Saturday.

Renay International (searchtransportation company based in Antakya, southern Turkey, announced Sunday that it was ending operations in Iraq, the Anatolia news agency reported.

"Our company is ending activities in Iraq. We hope that our driver is safely returned to our country and to his family," Anatolia quoted Edip Rende, a partner in Renay company as saying.

Anatolia identified the captured Turk as Mithat Civi.