The waiting goes on for the four western peace activists held captive in Iraq. The kidnappers say they will extend the deadline for the men’s execution by two days until Saturday.
A new video has emerged showing the hostages with hands chained and apparentlywearing orange jumpsuits. The UK government says there will be no negotiation but desperate times call for desperate measures.
From his cell in a high security prison in the UK, the radical cleric Abu Qatada broadcast a message urging the hostage takers to be merciful. Qatada, described by a Spanish judge as Al Qaeda’s ambassador in Europe, has been found guilty of terrorism offences in Jordan in his absence.
For the men’s families, the unbearable ordeal continues. The wife of 74-year-old Briton Norman Kember has once again pleaded for his life.
Meanwhile there has been no news of a French engineer kidnapped in Baghdad earlier this week. Bernard Planche was seized at his home by armed men.