Is time running out for an Italian journalist kidnapped in Afghanistan?
It is thought that today marks the end of a deadline set by the Taliban for Rome to meet its demands. In an audio recording a voice, said to be that of Daniele Mastrogiacomo, urged authorities to act, saying otherwise he would be killed.
His captors have called for Italy to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan – something Rome rules out. “We are not negotiating with the Taliban,” Italian Foreign Minister Massimo D’Alema told reporters.
“There are humanitarian channels following this matter and I believe that, to achieve our aim, they must be allowed to act in the greatest discretion.”
An earlier video of the hostage was obtained by an Italian humanitarian group in Afghanistan called ‘Emergency’. There is confusion over the exact role it is playing in efforts to resolve the crisis.