The foreign ministry said it was taking "all measures" to secure the release of eight Chinese nationals held hostage in Iraq. At the same time it urged other Chinese citizens not to travel to the country. The eight men are being held by a group calling itself the Numan Brigade which has reportedly threatened to kill the men unless Beijing "clarifies its role" in Iraq. China, which was a vocal opponent of the US-led invasion, said the men had traveled to Iraq independently seeking work, but had failed to secure jobs and were on their way out of the country when they were seized.
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