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Jillian C. York;

Three Tunisian consulate staff freed

Three of the ten members of the Tunisian consulate staff kidnapped in Tripoli five days ago are reported to have been freed.

The head of the Diplomatic Police, Faraj Swehli, told Reuters that they had been released but that the others would remain held until Tunisia freed Walid Al-Ghleib, a senior Libya Dawn commander charged by the Tunisian authorities with terrorism offences.

The ten were seized after a Tunisian appeal court refused to release Ghleib. Since then eight other Tunisians have been kidnapped, although it is not known if their abduction is related. Their fate is unknown.

When Ghleib was first arrested last month, some 250 Tunisians were abducted.

It is unclear if Swehli is himself implicated in the abduction. He is believed to be the same Faraj Swehli who was head of the Saadoun Swehli militia which seized and for a month held two British journalists three years ago.

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