Sunday, August 27, 2006

Britain Involved in Gaza Hostage Release

Debka (a fertile source of well-researched but often speculative information, on the whole to be handled with caution) considers that
Various Palestinian middlemen were used by British agents at the request of the US to bring the Fox journalists [Olaf Wiig and Steve Centanni] home. They worked out a convoluted deal which entailed their public conversion to Islam, an anti-American harangue on air and a six-figure cash ransom paid under the table to Dughmush to fund his terrorist militia’s operations in Gaza. While the first two parts of the ransom were publicly aired, the third part will no doubt be vehemently denied. But the face remains that a terrorist chief who freelances for at least three fundamentalist terrorist organizations walks free with a strong incentive to develop his profitable hostage-taking business.
Whatever the facts of the deal that was struck may be, it seems fairly clear that Britain was involved in the release of the hostages at some level. On August 16, A NewstalkZB/Reuters report confirmed that
The British Consul has contacted the office of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas asking for assistance in securing the pair's release and Palestinian security forces have been deployed.

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Prime Minister Helen Clark says New Zealand's diplomats credited to Palestine are based in Turkey and they will work with British authorities to try to secure Mr Wiig's release.
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