Released American was working alone in Iraq

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By LARA JAKES, Associated Press

BAGHDAD (AP) — Officials at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad say the American who was released this week after being held captive nine months by an anti-U.S. militia was working alone in Iraq and was not on a government contract.

The man identified as Randy Michael Hultz was not available for comment Sunday as Embassy officials interviewed him about details of his June 2011 kidnapping by a Shiite militia controlled by anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr.

Sadrist lawmakers who released Hultz said he was a former soldier and a government contractor in Baghdad.

However, two Embassy officials said Hultz had not been working for the U.S. government when he was kidnapped.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter.

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