Islamic extremists willing to pay tens of thousands for westerner kidnappings / News / The Foreigner

The Foreigner Islamic extremists willing to pay tens of thousands for westerner kidnappings. Extremists offered criminals some USD 45,000 bounties for kidnapping western nationals in the area surrounding Mali and Algeria. Ransom demands could have recently included Statoil employees, reports suggest. A ‘Wikileaked’ document shows that Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) were among those offering bounties. Mokthar Belmokhtar, the man behind the recent attack on Statoil’s In Aménas gas plant, which Algerian authorities now say left 37 foreign personnel from eight countries dead, is reported to have belonged to AQIM up until December 2012.

statoilalgeria, terrorists, kidnappers



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Islamic extremists willing to pay tens of thousands for westerner kidnappings

Published on Tuesday, 22nd January, 2013 at 10:37 under the news category, by Lyndsey Smith and Michael Sandelson      .
Last Updated on 22nd January 2013 at 16:38.

Extremists offered criminals some USD 45,000 bounties for kidnapping western nationals in the area surrounding Mali and Algeria. Ransom demands could have recently included Statoil employees, reports suggest.



A ‘Wikileaked’ document shows that Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) were among those offering bounties.

Mokthar Belmokhtar, the man behind the recent attack on Statoil’s In Aménas gas plant, which Algerian authorities now say left 37 foreign personnel from eight countries dead, is reported to have belonged to AQIM up until December 2012.

The same document also reports that Belmokhtar allegedly gave specific instructions these kidnap-for-ransoms should not included American citizens “for fear of retribution from the [US] government.”

“AQIM had offered a bounty of approximately $45,000 to any traffickers and bandits in northern Mali who kidnapped non-American Westerners,” shows the US State Department security report, which Aftenposten links to.

According to Martin Ewi, Pretoria-based senior Institute for Security Studies researcher, “they [terror groups active in West Africa also] probably had a perception that the Western countries would be more willing to negotiate and pay,”

Mr Ewi has written several articles on these groups, Aftenposten reports. The Norwegian daily does not specifically mention Statoil, apart from in its headline.

At the same time, Mr Ewi believes the In Aménas kidnappers wanted to take hostages to another place to negotiate with the various nationals’ countries’ authorities.

“They have earmarked certain countries that they expect would pay,” he says.

Another Aftenposten-published classified US official document claims the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combats (GSPC) abductors were able to make USD 6.5 million from “kidnapping 32 foreigners” in collaboration with Belmokhtar.



Published on Tuesday, 22nd January, 2013 at 10:37 under the news category, by Lyndsey Smith and Michael Sandelson      .
Last updated on 22nd January 2013 at 16:38.

This post has the following tags: statoilalgeria, terrorists, kidnappers.





  
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