BBC reporter could be released within next few hours
Sunday, June 17, 2007
"The BBC journalist will be released within the next hours, today", said Abu Osameh al-Mo'ti, Hamas spokesman from Iran.
Sami Abu Zuhri, a Hamas official in Gaza was however more cautious about the situation, saying that "There are encouraging indicators that he will be released in the near future. But we cannot determine this in terms of hours."
Later, a spokesman for the group said to be holding Alan, the Army of Islam denied the release was imminent. The group is demanding that Abu Qatada, described by the United Kingdom government as "significant international terrorist", be released and said that "If they don't meet these demands there will be no release of this prisoner."
The UK Foreign Office described the ongoing confusion as distressful to Alan Johnston's family and friends. The BBC has said that "We are watching developments very closely."
- "BBC reporter 'to be freed soon'" — , June 17, 2007
- Parisa Hafezi. "Hamas official says BBC reporter to be freed Sunday" — , June 17, 2007
- David Rosenberg and Saud Abu Ramadan. "BBC's Alan Johnston to Be Freed in `Coming Hours,' Hamas Says" — , June 17, 2007
- "Johnston deal denied by kidnappers" — , June 17, 2007
- "Palestinian group denies deal to free reporter" — , June 17, 2007