Two Poles, Five Others Kidnapped Near Baghdad
WARSAW, Poland – Two Polish construction workers were abducted Tuesday near Baghdad (search), along with three security guards and two other aides, a spokesman for their company said.
The group was abducted from their office northwest of the Iraqi capital at about noon by people who drove up in two Jeeps, Andrzej Polaczkiewicz, a spokesman for the Jedynka construction company, told Polish television.
One of the Polish men got away and reached coalition forces, Lt. Col. Robert Strzelecki, the spokesman for the Polish-led multinational division in Iraq, said in a phone interview from Camp Babylon (search) in Iraq.
"The man is in good condition. He suffered no injuries and he has gotten in touch with his family," he said.
Polaczkiewicz said the man who escaped, Radoslaw Kadri, managed to kick in a car window and jump out near a U.S. troop patrol, despite being handcuffed. The patrol gave chase but lost the assailants.
Polaczkiewicz identified the other abductees as three Kurdish security guards and two female staffers whose nationalities were not given. A search was under way for the missing Polish worker and the other abductees.
Polaczkewicz said the kidnappers burst into the office and rifled through papers and drawers.
"(The raid) looked like it was well prepared," he told N24 television.
An official at the Polish Embassy in Baghdad told the Polish news agency PAP that they were investigating the kidnapping, but would give no details.
"We are in touch with the coalition authorities, with the Americans and with Iraqi authorities. We are also using our contacts," Tomasz Gielzecki said.
Poland, a leading U.S. ally in last year's war to oust Saddam Hussein (search), commands some 6,200 troops from 17 nations in south-central Iraq and contributes some 2,400 troops of its own.
Very few Polish civilians remain in Iraq, the Foreign Ministry said this week.