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US military releases name of US captive soldier.

Summary: The United States military released Sunday the name of its solider held captive in Afganistan since late June while denouncing the release of the Taliban video of the soldier as propaganda that

The United States military released Sunday the name of its solider held captive in Afganistan since late June while denouncing the release of the Taliban video of the soldier as propaganda that violated international law.

Bowe Bergdahl, 23, from Idaho, is the captive soldier in the Taliban video,

military spokesman Captain Jon Stock announced. Bergdahl's name had not at first been released. The military said Bergdahl went missing in late June. "The use of the soldier for propaganda purposes we view as against international law," Stock said. "We are continuing to do whatever possible to recover the soldier safe and unharmed."

The soldier appeared with his head shaven, speaking to the camera.

The United States military has been distributing leaflets this week seeking his release and according to CBS NEWS, threatening to target Afgan civilians if the solider is not released. The soldier is the first U.S. service member believed to have been captured in Afghanistan since 2002.

The video

In the video, portions of which were available on the internet video sharing site YouTube (www.YouTube.com), the soldier appeared with his head shaven and a slight beard, wearing traditional gray, loose-fitting Afghan shalwar kameez clothing.

"Well, I am scared. I'm scared I won't be able to go home. It is very unnerving to be a prisoner," the soldier says.

"I have my girlfriend, who is hoping to marry. I have my grandma and grandpas. I have a very, very good family that I love back home in America."

In other clips, the soldier appears to be in good health and is shown occasionally eating. The video is cut in places, but a voice can be heard in the background prompting him at times.

At one point the voice says in English: "Any message to your people?"

"Yes. To my fellow Americans who have loved ones over here, who know what it's like to miss them: you have the power to make our government bring them home," the soldier says.

"Please, please bring us home so that we can go back to where we belong and not over here wasting our time and our lives."

Leaflets threaten Afgans

CBS NEWS reported last week that U.S. troops in Afganistan have distributed leaflets to Afgan villagers near the border of Ghazni and Paktika, warning that if the American soldier is not set free by Taliban in two weeks "you will be targeted."

Military spokeswoman Capt. Elizabeth Mathias reportedly confirmed leaflets were printed at Bagram Air Base and distributed door to door in the area, CBS NEWS said.

One side of the leaflet shows an image of an American soldier with his head bowed and a message in local Pashtun language reading "If you do not free the American soldier, then..."

On the other side of the leaflet the message "you will be targeted," is printed on an image of American soldiers breaking into a house.

(With Agencies)

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Publication:Al Arabiya (Saudi Arabia)
Date:Jul 18, 2009
Words:529
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