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Last Updated: Tuesday, 3 January 2006, 20:39 GMT
Iraqi minister's sister kidnapped
Iraqi Interior Minister Bayan Jabr
Bayan Jabr's ministry has been embroiled in controversy
The sister of Iraq's interior minister has been kidnapped at gunpoint, the government says.

Bayan Jabr's sister was travelling in a vehicle in north-eastern Baghdad when she was ambushed.

The interior ministry did not name her, and gave no further details, but it was reported that one bodyguard was killed and another injured in the attack.

Bayan Jabr is a member of the country's largest Shia party, the Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq.

He and his ministry have come under fire in the last few weeks over the handling of detainees in Iraqi prisons - some of whom have been found abused and underfed.

Some Sunnis have also claimed that squads connected to the interior ministry and the Badr Brigades - a Shia militia in which Mr Jabr used to be a senior official - have been targeting and killing Sunnis.

But it is not known if the kidnapping was politically motivated, says the BBC's Alastair Leithead in Baghdad.

Three months ago, the minister's brother was abducted as he drove to work at a hospital near the Sadr City district of Baghdad. He was released the following day.

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