Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz has been taken into US custody, local television reports said Thursday.
The reports quoted US defense officials as saying that Aziz is in US custody. US Central Command headquarters in Qatar has yet to confirm the reports.
It was unclear whether Aziz, ranking 43 on Washington's list of55 most wanted Iraqi officials, surrendered to the US forces in Iraq or was caught by the forces. ABC television said he had givenhimself up.
Aziz, who served as Iraqi foreign minister during the 1991 Gulfwar, was widely perceived as the speaker of the Iraqi government of President Saddam Hussein, but not considered one of the inner-circle decision-makers.