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Iraq Transition

Iraqi TV ads appeal for U.S. journalist's release

Three children among dead in scattered attacks

Jill Carroll is seen in a video that aired earlier this month on Alrai Television in Kuwait.


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BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- An Iraqi television station has begun airing announcements seeking the release of Christian Science Monitor freelance journalist Jill Carroll, who was kidnapped in early January.

The effort comes amid deadly violence in the Iraqi capital. Attacks involving bombs and drive-by shootings killed 11 people Wednesday, including three children walking to school.

In the announcements, aired free of charge on state-run Iraqiya TV beginning Tuesday, Carroll's mother and an Iraqi politician plead for her release. (Watch the announcements -- 3:00)

"It's time for Jill Carroll to come safely home," the narrator says over a montage of images showing Carroll.

"I, her father and her sister are appealing directly to her captors, to release this young woman who has worked so hard to show the suffering of Iraqis to the world," her mother, Mary Beth Carroll, says in a clip taken from an earlier CNN interview.

Iraqi politician Adnan al-Dulaimi, whom Carroll was waiting to meet before she was kidnapped January 7, also appears in the announcement, his comments pulled from an earlier news conference.

"Please, I appeal to those who kidnapped American journalist Jill Carroll," he said. "I call on them to release her. She is a woman who strived for Iraq, defended Iraq, defended Iraqis."

The announcements, which CNN helped to produce, are 60 seconds and 90 seconds long. Iraqiya TV is financed in part by the United States.

Separately, a "former senior official in Saddam Hussein's regime" has also appealed for Carroll's release, The Christian Science Monitor reports.

The paper identified him as Sattam Hameed Farhan al-Gaood, who was "released in December after an extended period in U.S. detention."

"Upon the request of Jill Carroll's family, who called on us to contribute to release their daughter, I have already taken serious steps and am doing the best I can in this respect," he is quoted as saying from Jordan.

"I find myself in a position that can't be ignored, because the appeal came from a mother and a father and not from a bunch of occupiers ... I call upon you in the name of Islam and the honor that is characteristic of Muslims and Arabs, and remind you that forgiveness is a duty ... I as your brother have been asked to help, and if you think that I am worthy, then please respond to my appeal," he is quoted as saying.

He said that he believes Carroll, 28, should be freed "to prove that the resistance does not kill innocents," The Monitor reports.

Carroll's Iraqi interpreter was killed during her abduction; her Iraqi driver escaped.

Last week, citing sources close to the kidnappers, Alrai Television in Kuwait reported that Carroll's captors had set "a final deadline of February 26" for their demands to be met.

It is the second deadline set by her abductors, who have repeatedly said they will kill Carroll if the United States does not release all female prisoners it has in custody in Iraq.

Other high-profile hostages include:

  • Four members of the Christian Peacemaker Teams: Canadians James Loney and Hameet Singh Sooden, American Tom Fox and Briton Norman Kember. They were seized November 26 in Baghdad.
  • German engineers Rene Braunlich and Thomas Nitzschke, who were kidnapped in Baiji on January 24.
  • Two correspondents from Al-Sumariya, an Iraqi satellite channel: Marwan Khazaal and Rym Zayd. They were kidnapped in western Baghdad two weeks ago.
  • Hundreds of Iraqi civilians have also been kidnapped.

    Three children among dead

    Three children walking to school in central Baghdad were killed by a roadside bomb, one of several strikes that killed 11 people across the capital Wednesday.

    A morning drive-by shooting in southwestern Baghdad left an Interior Ministry official, Capt. Ali Yousef, and his driver dead.

    In eastern Baghdad, two car bombs went off, one of them as a police patrol was passing. In that incident, a civilian was killed and four others were wounded. The other car bomb killed a civilian and wounded three traffic officers.

    A car bomb also killed four police on patrol in the Adhamiya neighborhood of northeastern Baghdad around noon. Three police and a civilian were wounded.

    In the same vicinity, two U.S. trucks were attacked and set on fire. It was not clear whether the vehicles belonged to the military or contractors.

    Other developments

  • Previously unpublished images of the abuse of Iraqi prisoners in U.S. custody at Abu Ghraib prison have emerged, including what appears to be forced masturbation for the camera. The images were taken in 2003, at the same time other photographs, leaked to the media the following year, were taken, according to the Australian TV program "Dateline," which broadcast the images Wednesday. A spokesman for the military coalition in Iraq called the timing of the new images' broadcast "unnecessarily provocative." (Full story)
  • A court in Jordan has condemned to death al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a Jordanian, and eight other men for plotting a chemical attack that would have killed thousands of people in Amman. (Full story)
  • U.S. soldiers south of Baghdad killed five insurgents during the past 24 hours in separate incidents, one of them at the Yusafiya power plant, the U.S. military said Wednesday. Two people have been detained, and a search of an empty house turned up an anti-aircraft gun and a rocket-propelled grenade, the military said.
  • CNN's Arwa Damon contributed to this report.

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