- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 10, 2013

Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan was released from captivity early Thursday, just hours after gunmen stole into his luxury Tripoli hotel and snatched him from his room.

The gunmen took him to a convoy of vehicles and drove him to an undisclosed site, the prime minister’s office said, CNN reported.

Mr. Zeidan calls the hotel his home; the facility also houses the justice minister and several other high-ranking government officials. A witness said the gunmen “caused no trouble” and were respectful to the prime minister, CNN reported. At first, Mr. Zeidan’s office refused to admit the kidnapping, calling it a “rumor” on its Facebook page.

Shortly after, staffers then updated the social media site to say they had been “coerced by kidnappers to deny the report.”

The militia group that kidnapped Mr. Zeidan, the Operations Room of Libya’s Revolutionaries, said they were angry about his financial corruption, CNN reported. But CBS reported that his kidnapping was more like a retaliation for the United States’ special forces’ mission this past weekend that led to the capture of a al Qaeda suspect in Libya. The New York Times reported similarly — that the brief abduction was an act of revenge for the U.S. operation.