US identifies citizen killed in Iraq

BAGHDAD (AP) — The US citizen who was killed in Baghdad has been identified as 45-year-old Stephen Edward Troell, the US embassy in the Iraqi capital said.

Troell, from Tennessee, worked in humanitarian aid and as a teacher in Iraq. He was killed by unknown assailants as he was riding in his car and turning onto the street where he lived with his family in the Karrada district of Baghdad.

It was a rare killing of a foreign national in Iraq, where security has improved in recent years, including opening the door to tourism.

The embassy said it was closely following the investigation launched by Iraqi authorities, but declined to comment further out of respect for the family of the deceased.

A State Department official said Troell was a private citizen with no ties to the government. The official spoke on condition of anonymity as he was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani ordered an investigation in the hours after the assassination.

The circumstances surrounding Troell’s death and his activities in Iraq are a mystery. No group has claimed responsibility for the crime. Police officials dismissed the possibility that it was a failed kidnapping attempt.

Police officials said that when Troell entered the street where he lived, in the Wahda area of ​​the Karrada neighborhood, a vehicle cut him off and he was shot at from another. They added that his wife and son were with him, but they were unharmed. The whereabouts of the wife and children are unknown.

Troell worked for a language school in the Harthiya neighborhood of Baghdad and it has been reported that he was also employed by an American NGO called Millennium Relief and Development Services. The Associated Press tried to contact the organization’s headquarters, in the northern province of Dohuk, but local authorities said the entity had not operated for two years.

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