Taliban report killing another South Korean hostage as deadline passes

Monday, July 30, 2007

A Taliban spokesman has stated that a South Korean hostage has been executed after a deadline had passed on Taliban demands to the Afghan government.

"We shot dead a male captive because the government did not listen to our demands," Qari Mohammad Yousuf, Taliban spokesman told Reuters news agency by phone. "We killed one of the male hostages at 6:30 this evening because the Kabul administration did not listen to our repeated demands," he continued.

AFP have quoted a Taliban spokesman as saying, "Finally tonight at 8:30 we killed one of the Koreans named Sung Sin with AK-47 gunshots." There isn't, as of yet, an explanation for the apparent 2-hour time discrepancy of the claimed killing.

Yousuf indicated that the Taliban have threatened to kill more hostages if their demands for the release of Taliban prisoners by Afghan officials were not met. A new deadline was not imposed. Yousuf told Reuters that Sung Sin's body had been dumped by the side of a road. The Taliban has also demanded the withdrawal of South Korean troops from Afghanistan.

If the death is confirmed, Sung Sin would be the second South Korean hostage killed by the Taliban since the capture of the 23 Christian aid volunteers on July 19. On July 25, the Taliban shot and killed Bae Hyung-kyu, a 42-year-old pastor. His body was subsequently found in the desert area of the southern province of Ghazni, near where the aid workers were captured.

Ghanzi Govornor Marajudin Pathan stated that officials were aware of the Taliban’s killing, but that a body has not yet been recovered, although police have begun searching. He could not specify on a timetable for the recovery of Sin's body.

“Ghazni is a very vast area, so we really don’t know where the body is,” Pathan said.