• Kyodo

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Suzuki Motor Corp. refused to comment Friday on the reported release of the head of the company’s Brazilian unit, who was kidnapped in Sao Paulo on Sunday.

Kazuyoshi Suzuki, a director in charge of public relations, said he would not comment on the incident to avoid encouraging the kidnappers.

“But it was good that (he) was released shortly with nobody hurt,” he told a press conference.

Suzuki Motor officials said news reports were generally accurate but the company could not make detailed comments because the kidnappers remain at large.

The automaker’s headquarters in Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture, decided to strive for the release of Kiyoshige Ishii, chairman of its Brazil subsidiary, as soon as it heard of his kidnapping.

Ishii joined the company in 1978 and has held his current post since the Brazilian unit was set up in November 1999.

The subsidiary sold about 2,000 vehicles last year through more than 20 sales dealerships in Brazil, Suzuki Motor said.

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