Four Russians taken hostage by Iraqi gunmen in Baghdad have been released just hours after they were captured, according to the Italian news agency ANSA.The embassy workers were snatched during a deadly attack that killed one member of their group. Insurgents had blocked off their vehicle in the Mansour district of the capital and then opened fire on the car causing the fatality. The embassy workers were apparently shopping in the area. Mansour is an upscale part of Baghdad housing several embassies and has frequently been gripped by violence. This incident provides yet another reminder of the security challenges facing Iraq’s new Prime Minister. Nuri al-Maliki has pledged to rein in the widespread guerilla and insurgent violence racking Iraq.
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