An Iraqi group holding two German engineers hostage has set a deadline for their deaths. The group said they will kill Rene Braeunlich and Thomas Nitzschke in 72 hours unless Germany closes its embassy in Baghdad. The two men were seized on the 24th of January at an oil refinery compound in Northern Iraq.
There has been a lot of insurgent activity in the area in recent times. Its thought to be aimed at disrupting oil production.This is the second time that Germany has faced a hostage crisis in Iraq involving its own nationals. Germany is involved in troop training and business affairs in the country, but has no troops stationed there. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has condemned the kidnappings and requested that both men be freed immediately.