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NBC News' Richard Engel, Two Colleagues Freed From Syrian Captors

NBC News' Richard Engel. (2009 file shot.)
NBC News' Richard Engel. (2009 file shot.)

NBC News chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel and two members of his production team are free after five days of being held captive in Syria.

The network says Engel and his colleagues were traveling with rebels in Syria last Thursday when they were kidnapped by armed men. Their captors "executed one of the rebels 'on the spot,' " NBC says.

Monday evening, NBC reports:

"The prisoners were being moved to a new location in a vehicle when their captors ran into a checkpoint manned by members of the Ahrar al-Sham brigade, a Syrian rebel group. There was a confrontation and a firefight ensued. Two of the captors were killed, while an unknown number of others escaped, the network said. The NBC News crew was unharmed in the incident."

"It is good to be here," Engel, who is now in Turkey, said during a live appearance this morning on NBC's The Today Show. "I'm very happy that we're able to do this live shot this morning."

On Today, The Associated Press adds, Engel said he "believes the gunmen who kidnapped him and his crew in Syria were a Shiite militia group loyal to the Syrian government."

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