Al-Jazeera aired a new videotape Monday of kidnapped U.S. journalist Jill Carroll, showing her wearing a veil and weeping as she purportedly appealed for the release of women Iraqi prisoners. The video is dated Saturday, two days after the U.S. military released five Iraqi women detainees but said it had nothing to do with the kidnappers’ demands to do so.
The video had no sound, but the Al-Jazeera newscaster said Carroll appealed to the U.S. military and the Iraqi Interior Ministry to release all women in their prisons and that this "would help in winning her release." The military had said before the release that it was holding nine Iraqi women, and it was not known when the others might be let go.
This time the kidnappers have decided to make the video more dramatic by showing her in hijab and weeping! What more do they need?!? Haven’t their demands been met?!? I’m not sure I will be able to watch this video this time. The knot in my stomach is more than I can bear.
UPDATE: CNN is reporting that an Iraqi justice ministry official believes the remaining four female detainees could be released soon:
Bosho Ibrahim Ali, a deputy justice minister, told CNN the remaining four female prisoners might be released with another group at another time. Ali said he had started his effort to free the female detainees for humanitarian reasons before Carroll’s abduction.
UPDATE 2:Following the release of this new video, Christian Science Monitor editor Richard Bergenheim released a statement:
Anyone with a heart will feel distressed that an innocent woman like Jill Carroll would be treated in the manner shown in the latest video aired by Al Jazeera. We add our voice to those of Arabs around the world, and especially to those in Iraq, who have condemned this act of kidnapping. We ask that she be returned to the protection of her family immediately.
UPDATE 3:The United States also released a statement saying it would not give in to the kidnappers’ demands:
"We will not make concessions to terrorist demands," US military spokesman in Iraq Lieutenant Colonel Barry Johnson said. He said US forces were continuing to work with Iraqi authorities "to resolve the situation as quickly as possible."