Spain says Libya to release photographer

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Spain's government said Wednesday Libya would release Spanish photographer Manu Brabo imminently, six weeks after he was detained by Moamer Kadhafi's forces.

"Manu will now be freed," Foreign Minister Trinidad Jimenez told a news conference.

Libya had officially informed the Spanish government of the impending release, Jimenez said. "We hope it will be in the coming hours or tomorrow at the latest," she said.

Americans James Foley of GlobalPost and freelance writer Clare Morgana Gillis, as well as Brabo and South African photographer Anton Hammerl disappeared April 4 while covering the conflict.

The Spanish foreign minister's statement confirmed news from Tripoli that the four were to be released "very soon."

"The four journalists were tried by an administrative tribunal and were given one-year suspended prison sentences, and a fine of 200 dinar ($154, 108 euros) each for illegal entry into the country," Libyan government spokesman Mussa Ibrahim told AFP on Tuesday.

"There are some administrative procedures to complete. They will be freed very soon," added Ibrahim.

© 2011 AFP

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