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Top Iraqi Police Officers Arrested in Mass Abduction

In Baghdad, a senior police commander and four officers are arrested in connection with Tuesday morning's kidnappings at the Higher Education Ministry building. Many of the hostages seized have reportedly been released, but it remains unclear how many are being held.

The incident began suddenly, when gunmen dressed in Interior Ministry commando uniforms abducted at least 50 people from a research building. Officials say both Shiites and Sunnis were among those seized, but some witnesses say only Shiites were targeted.

There have been conflicting numbers of how many people were abducted. Initial reports put the number at 150; the number has since been reported as less than 50. Those released say they were humiliated and beaten.


Investigators at the Interior Ministry are now trying to determine why the abduction took place. They suspect the men, who drove up to the college office building in official-looking SUVs and pickup trucks, were Shiite militiamen.

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