The family of Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun said Tuesday they had received word that the Lebanese-born U.S. Marine, who was kidnapped in Iraq and at one point was reported beheaded, was free and well.
A Lebanese government official also said Hassoun, 24, was released, though his whereabouts were unknown. The kidnappers freed Hassoun after he pledged not to return to the U.S. military, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Hassoun has been missing since June 19.
Hassoun's brother in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli said Tuesday he was confident that his brother was free, although he had not spoken to him. "We have received reliable information the guy is free," Sami Hassoun said. "We received a sign from my brother reassuring us."
Sami Hassoun said the family had received credible information from a person who came to their Tripoli home. The person, whom he did not identify, did not say where the Marine was, Sami Hassoun said.
On Saturday, a militant group calling itself the Ansar al-Sunna Army claimed on a Web site that it had beheaded Hassoun. On Monday, a group calling itself Islamic Response told al-Jazeera television that Hassoun was safe at an undisclosed location.