US vows not to make “concessions to terrorists,” calls for immediate release of Fox journalists
Wednesday, 9 days after the two Fox staffers were abducted in Gaza, the “Holy Jihad Brigades” claimed the kidnap and gave the US 72 hours to free Muslim prisoners as well as releasing a videotape.
It was the first word on the two journalists, Steve Centanni, a 60-year old American, and New Zealander Olaf Wiig, 36. On a videotape aired by al Jazeera, Centanni says they are treated well and in good condition. He asked friends to “do what you can to get us out of here” and call for the release of Muslim prisoners.
debkafile‘s counter-terror sources identify the Holy Jihad Brigades as a branch of the Popular Resistance Committees, a Palestinian terrorist umbrella, associated with al Qaeda-Palestine.
“Release what you have, and we will release what we have,” the “Holy Jihad Brigades” said in a statement obtained by Reuters. Al Jazeera television reports a videotape was delivered.
The group did not say what would happen to the two journalists if the United States did not meet their demand to release Muslims in American prisons by the time the deadline expires on Saturday.
“If you implement our conditions we will implement our promise, otherwise you will have to wait,” the statement said.