Six captives set free in Iraq

Two Turkish and four Jordanian nationals held in Iraq have been set free by their captors after negotiations.

    Truck drivers have proved to be most vulnerable to capture

    In a video aired by Aljazeera on Wednesday, the Tawhid and Jihad Group said the two Turks - Abd Al-Rahman Demir and Said Unurlu - were being released because of their companies' "decision to stop sending supplies to US forces in Iraq".

    On Sunday, the haulage firms Kahramanli and Oztur, which employ the two former captives, said they were prepared to suspend operations in Iraq to secure their release.

    Tawhid and Jihad had threatened to execute the two men if its demands were not met. 
       
    Narrow escape

    Also on Wednesday, a group calling itself the Death Squad of Iraqi Resistance released four Jordanian drivers it had seized this week.

    The freed Jordanians are staying
    with a local elder in Falluja now

    Ahmad Hasan Abu Jafa, one of the freed men, told Aljazeera, "I was supposed to be killed yesterday ... as the Jordanian authorities had not responded to the kidnappers' demands."

    Recounting their collective experience, he said, "We were attacked outside Falluja and held as captive until last night (Tuesday)."

    "When the Shura council, a body responsible for consultation and negotiations, learnt about us, they stormed the place where we were held in an attempt to have us freed."

    'Treated well'

    Ahmad said, "No exchange of fire erupted as a large number of people stormed the place and negotiated our release.

    "I was supposed to be killed yesterday ... as the Jordanian authorities had not responded to the kidnappers' demands"

    Ahmad Hasan Abu Jafa, freed Jordanian truck driver

    "We were then released and are now in the hands of the Shura council."

    He further told Aljazeera, "We were treated well by our captors".

    Questioned about the nature of the Jordanians' work, Ahmad said, "We don't work for companies. We deal with Iraqi merchants."

    He added, "We have never delivered goods to the US army in Iraq."

    Relatives confirmed to Aljazeera that all four are well.

    "They are now staying in the home of Haji Ibrahim Muhammad in the town of Falluja," said Muhammad Hasan Abu Jafar, brother of Ahmad. "They spent the night in his house after their release".



    'Worth nothing'

    Meanwhile, in a phone interview with Dubai TV, a man who identified  himself as the leader of the Death Squad of Iraqi Resistance, said, "No one negotiated with us ... . These Arab citizens are worth nothing to their governments, whereas no stone is left unturned when a Westerner is taken captive by the resistance." 

    "No one negotiated with us ... . These Arab citizens are worth nothing to their governments, whereas no stone is left unturned when a Westerner is taken captive by the resistance"

    Leader of Death Squad of Iraqi Resistance

    "We have asked their government to denounce the aggression and cease its support of US forces, and for companies that deal with US forces to pull out. We would then have no problem with them," he said.

    A televised video of the group's message earlier called on the Jordanian people to pressure their government to end its support of US-led forces. 

    The group also said, "We are the soldiers of God, not the soldiers of [deposed Iraqi president] Saddam Hussein."   
       
    Various groups in Iraq continue a campaign aimed at driving out companies and troops supporting US forces and the Iraqi interim administration.

    Nine captives have been executed to date.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera + Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.