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UPDATED: 13:07, December 20, 2004
Kidnapped Filipino in Iraq to be released soon: spokesman
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The kidnapped Filipino accountant Robert Tarongoy may be freed by his Iraqi captors this month, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Monday.

The Iraqi government is still in talks with the militant group that seized Tarongoy on Nov. 1, DFA spokesman Gilbert Asuque told reporters.

Asuque added that he remained confident Tarongoy will return to the country before the end of the month.

Earlier, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo gave Filipino negotiators the time until the second week of December to secure Tarongoy's release.

Tarongoy, American contractor Roy Hallums, Nepalese worker Inus Dewari, and three Iraqis were kidnapped by Iraqi militants inside the compound of the Saudi Arabian Trading and Construction Company, that does catering for the US and Iraqi armies.

Dewari and the three Iraqi hostages were later released by the militants.

On Saturday, US Embassy officials confirmed that Hallums and Tarongoy are still being held captive by the unidentified group.

Source: Xinhua

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