hostage

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New Video Says ISIS Hostages Have 24 Hours to Live

Voice claiming to be Kenji Goto calls for Iraqi prisoner's release

(Newser) - A new video message claiming to be from ISIS says that two hostages have 24 hours or less to live unless an Iraqi prisoner is released from Jordan, USA Today reports. The video, posted today, features a still image of hostage Kenji Goto , a Japanese journalist, as the voice of... More »

ISIS Video Says One Japanese Hostage Is Dead

It demands prisoner exchange for second one

(Newser) - ISIS has released a new video claiming that one of its two Japanese hostages has been executed, reports the Wall Street Journal . In the video, hostage Kenji Goto is seen holding a photo of what appears to be the decapitated head and body of fellow hostage Haruna Yukawa. "You... More »

Japan to ISIS: We Won't Pay Ransom for Hostages

Country wants extremists to know its money isn't 'aimed at killing Muslims'

(Newser) - Japan says it's exercising every diplomatic channel in the wake of ISIS' video threat to kill two Japanese hostages, emphasizing that the funds it's contributing to the international effort against the group are "not aimed at killing Muslims … and that [ISIS] shouldn't harm the two... More »

ISIS Gives Japan 72 Hours to Pay $200M Ransom

Video shows two hostages in orange jumpsuits

(Newser) - In a video released online today, ISIS threatens to kill two Japanese hostages unless it receives a $200 million ransom in the next 72 hours. The video, posted on militant websites associated with the extremist group, mirrors other hostage threats it has made. The militant in it also directly addresses... More »

Police Bullet Hit Sydney Hostage

Bullet ricocheted, hit Katrina Dawson during cops' shootout with gunman

(Newser) - Australian cops who stormed the Sydney chocolate shop where a gunman took 18 people hostage may have accidentally killed one of the captives in the melee, the Sydney Morning Herald says. Police investigators say that forensics show 38-year-old Katrina Dawson was struck by fragments from a police bullet, which ricocheted... More »

Italian Women Plead for Lives in Syria Video

Aid workers were kidnapped in July

(Newser) - Two young Italian aid workers kidnapped in Syria last summer plead for their lives in a chilling new video released by their captors. Greta Ramelli and Vanessa Marzullo, 20 and 21 years old, are seen wearing Islamic garb in the video, and one holds up a piece of paper with... More »

Sydney Cafe Victim: Mom of 3

'Best and brightest' barrister Katrina Dawson mourned

(Newser) - A makeshift memorial has been set up in central Sydney and flags across New South Wales will be flown at half-mast today to honor two hostages killed in the Lindt Chocolat Cafe. One victim has been identified as Katrina Dawson, a highly respected barrister and the mother of three children... More »

Police: Sydney Siege 'Is Over;' Gunman and 2 Hostages Dead

Hostages seen fleeing cafe with hands up

(Newser) - More than 16 hours into the hostage situation in Sydney, a dramatic scene and then an ending: The Sydney Morning Herald's live blog reports that police have confirmed the siege has ended, with CNN adding that the gunman was killed in the joint military-police raid. Police are confirming that... More »

Sydney Hostage Taker Demands ISIS Flag

Hostages appear 'pained, strained' as siege goes on

(Newser) - Ominous developments in Sydney, where an unknown number of people are being held hostage in a chocolate shop and cafe: A gunman has contacted multiple media outlets and demanded both an ISIS flag and a phone call to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, according to Sky News Australia , and the... More »

#illridewithyou Triumphs Amid Hostage Situation

Australians come out against anti-Muslim sentiment

(Newser) - In the midst of ominous developments this morning in Sydney, Australia, one encouraging storyline has emerged: Australians are coming out en masse on social media to proclaim that intolerance will not be tolerated. The #illridewithyou hashtag has rapidly gone viral, with residents streaming online to express an eager willingness to... More »

5 Hostages Escape Sydney Chocolate Shop Siege

Up to 30 others still being held, police say

(Newser) - An unknown number of hostages are being held at a chocolate shop and cafe in Sydney in what Prime Minister Tony Abbott says may be a politically motivated incident. Authorities say they're still working to find out how many people are being held in the Lindt Chocolat Cafe, where... More »

Hostages Held in Sydney Chocolate Shop

TV footage showed what appeared to be black flag with white Arabic writing

(Newser) - An apparent hostage situation is unfolding inside a chocolate shop and cafe in Australia's largest city, where several people could be seen through a window with their hands held in the air. New South Wales police said they were dealing with "an armed incident," though they would... More »

US 'Unaware' of Other Hostage in Failed Raid

Locals say civilian boy also killed in Yemen raid

(Newser) - The US had no idea that South African Pierre Korkie was being held with American Luke Somers before the raid that both men died in , officials say. A US official tells the BBC that special forces were "unaware" of the identity of the other hostage being held with Somers... More »

Charity: Hostage Killed in Raid Was About to Go Free

'His passport was ready,' says official of South Africa's Pierre Korkie

(Newser) - The family of South African teacher Pierre Korkie was expecting him to be released by al-Qaeda tomorrow after 18 months of captivity in Yemen, reports Sky News . Instead, he was killed today as US commandos tried to free fellow hostage Luke Somers, an American. "His passport was ready, everything... More »

Dog Bark May Have Foiled Hostage Rescue

Commandos got close to Yemen compound before noise alerted militants

(Newser) - The US commandos who tried to rescue American Luke Somers in Yemen came agonizingly close to doing so, according to an account in the Wall Street Journal . It says that about 40 special-ops troops got to within 100 yards of the walled compound in silence about 1am local time. Then,... More »

US Hostage Killed in Rescue Attempt

Pentagon: Luke Somers was shot by al-Qaeda

(Newser) - American photojournalist Luke Somers is dead after a rescue attempt by American forces in Yemen, reports the Washington Post . Defense chief Chuck Hagel says that US troops tried to free the 33-year-old Somers because his execution was "imminent," but that his al-Qaeda keepers killed him during the raid.... More »

US: Yemen Raid Missed American Hostage

Luke Somers 'not present' during attempted rescue last month

(Newser) - The Pentagon and White House acknowledged today that the US tried last month to rescue a 33-year-old American journalist, Luke Somers, who is being held by al-Qaeda in Yemen, but "regrettably, Luke was not present," per a National Security Council spokeswoman. A video of Somers pleading for help... More »

US to Review How We Handle Hostage Cases

'Increased frequency of hostage-taking' abroad spurs effort

(Newser) - Amid ISIS' continued onslaught against American hostages and widespread criticism of the White House's response, President Obama has ordered a review of policy in handling hostage situations abroad, the Wall Street Journal reports. The move comes "as a result of the increased frequency of hostage-taking of Americans overseas,... More »

Father of ISIS Hostage Dies

Paul Cantlie had made appeal for release of son John

(Newser) - Paul Cantlie made an impassioned plea from his hospital bed for his son's life earlier this month, but he died not knowing whether it worked. The 80-year-old is dead from complications of pneumonia, reports the BBC . His son, John Cantlie, is a British journalist who has been held captive... More »

Parents Release Letter From US ISIS Hostage

'Hardest part is not knowing,' writes the former Peter Kassig

(Newser) - An American ISIS hostage says he's "scared to die, but the hardest part is not knowing, wondering, hoping, and wondering if I should even hope at all." The words come from a letter Abdul-Rahman Kassig, formerly known as Peter Kassig, wrote to his parents; they received the... More »

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