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Only one American is being held by tribesmen in Yemen, an American Embassy official said Saturday, contradicting earlier reports that two Americans were taken hostage.

"Only one American has been kidnapped. We are hoping for a peaceful outcome," said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Other sources had said that a second American had been kidnapped on Thursday.

On Wednesday, an American identified as Kenneth White was kidnapped by members of the al-Faheed tribe in the eastern Marib province and taken to a mountainous part in the province. Police and army troops, assisted by helicopters, were searching for White, who works for Halliburton, a Dallas-based company.

White was seized near oil fields operated by Hunt Oil Co., which has a contract with Halliburton.

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