Weren’t we told he was going to be released immediately?
The kidnappers of BBC correspondent Alan Johnston have released a new video of him in which he is wearing what he says is an explosives vest. In the tape, Mr Johnston says his captors have said they will detonate the vest if force is used to try to free him. It is the second such video released since Mr Johnston was abducted in Gaza on 12 March.
The BBC renewed its appeal for Mr Johnston’s immediate release. In a statement, the corporation said: “It is very distressing for Alan’s family and colleagues to see him being threatened in this way. “We ask those holding Alan to avoid him being harmed by releasing him immediately. “We are keeping his family fully informed and offering them our continued support.”
Mr Johnston’s father, Graham, said: “My family and I are obviously most concerned and distressed at this latest development. “Our thoughts, of course, are with Alan in his present predicament. We earnestly request his abductors to release Alan, unharmed in any way.
Hope that he will be released without harm. But seeing the photo is enough to see that he is in a rather bad situation…
More from AP-Yahoo!:
Johnston appeared wearing a white and blue belt around his torso with black shoulder straps over a dark red sweater in the undated video filmed against a black background. The 45-year-old Briton looked tired, but unharmed.
“I do appeal to the Hamas movement and the British government not to resort to tactics of force in an effort to end this. I would ask the BBC and anyone in Britain who wishes me well to support me in that appeal,” he said in the one minute video.
Ismail Haniyeh, the prime minister of the Hamas-led government sacked by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah, said earlier on Sunday his group has not used force to free Johnston at the request of the British government, fearing he might be killed or injured in the process.
Johnston said negotiations to seek his release were thwarted by what his captors told him was a plan by Britain and Hamas to use force to secure his release.
“Captors tell me that very promising negotiations were ruined when the Hamas movement and the British government decided to press for a military solution to this kidnapping.”
“The answer is to return to negotiations, which I am told are very close to reaching a deal… They (captors) say they are willing to turn the hideout into what they described as a ‘death zone’ if there was an attempt to free me by force,” he added.
On June 17 a spokesman of the Army of Islam said negotiations had been underway for the release of the Scotsman, but said Johnston would be killed if the group was trapped. Wearing a black face mask he insisted in a video that at least part of the group’s demands be met.
The captors want Britain to free Muslim prisoners, particularly Islamist cleric Abu Qatada, in exchange for the reporter’s release.
Hein??? Abu Qutada en Wikipedia (ES):
Considered the high responsible of Al Qaeda in Europe. He is accused of using his fatwas to call for the murder of different people, specially in Argelia. He is also linked allegedlly to Salafist Group to the Preaching and Combat -now, Al Qaeda in Maghreb more here– and to the Armed Islamic Group.
He has links with Sept.11 terrorist attacks because his videos and preachings were found at the Hamburg‘s appartment of the suicide pilot Mohamed Atta. He can have also relations with the authors of the March 11th bombings in Madrid considering his connections with Jamal Zougam, Srerhane Ben Abdelmajid and Imad Eddin Barakat.”
Well, even if the false proofs and the huge mess the process of the March 11th bombings is -we don’t know even what kind of explosive was used-, just in case, this is not the kind of guy I want to see set loose in the streets. The question is: is he maintaining his
incitement to murder preaching activity now, or not?