December 9th, 2011
07:33 PM ET

Missing American's captors emailed from AfPak region

By National Correspondent Susan Candiotti

A US government official tells CNN that at least one email sent to the family of retired FBI agent Bob Levinson by captors holding him hostage
is believed to have originated in internet cafes in Pakistan or Afghanistan.

Levinson's exact location remains a mystery.  In March, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a statement that the U.S. had "received recent indications that Bob is being held somewhere in southwest Asia."

At least two meetings have taken place between Iran and the United States to free Levinson, according to the same US government official
who declined to be identified because of sensitivities surrounding efforts to find the retired FBI agent.  The emergence of the proof of life last year fueled a fresh round of "discussions" between the United States and Iran, a senior diplomatic official told Susan Candiotti and Elise Labott back in March.

The discussions, not equivalent to negotiations, were described as "working level," meaning it was not conducted by senior administration officials, the official said.

The United States is awaiting action by Iran and is hopeful progress is being made, the official said.

It's unclear how or when these meetings took place, and would certainly be unusual given that the two countries have no diplomatic relations.

Since Levinson disappeared, the U-S government has said repeatedly that it hopes Iran would provide help to find out what happened to Levinson who was last seen on Iran's Kish island in 2007.. Levinson's wife and son also travelled to Iran seeking information about him.

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Filed under: Clinton • Iran • State Department
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