Video: Abu Qatada Seeks Release Of Hostages
The Guardian has reported that Abu Qatada, who has been described as Osama bin Laden's spiritual ambassador in Europe, made the plea in a film broadcast on Arab television networks for the kidnappers to free Norman Kember and Harmeet Sooden, James Loney, Thomas Fox, who were in Iraq as Christian peace activists. Mr Qatada, a Jordanian born imam who faces deportation as a terror suspect, addressed the group, known as the Swords of Righteousness Brigade, as "my brothers".
Abu Qatada said: "I, your brother Abu Qatada ... beseech my brothers in the Swords of Truth in Iraq, who are imprisoning the four Christian peace activists, to release them in accordance with the fundamental principle of mercy of our faith," he said in the appeal broadcast yesterday. "Our prophet said mercy should be shown unless there is a reason in Sharia [Islamic law] that prevents it."