Alexa

Rally in Cairo calls to free reporter

Rally in Cairo calls to free reporter

British Broadcasting Corp. correspondents rallied here yesterday demanding the release of their colleague who was kidnapped by Palestinian gunmen seven weeks ago in the Gaza Strip.
About 40 BBC journalists and other members of the media gathered downtown holding posters urging the release of Alan Johnston, who was abducted on March 12. Yesterday marked the 49th day since the 44-year-old correspondent was last seen.
BBC correspondents who spoke with The Associated Press expressed their disappointment with the dangers journalists face in some parts of the world and called upon international governments for support.
"Being aware of the dangers, he was one of the few to base himself in Gaza," said Ian Pannell, the BBC's Cairo bureau chief. "He is hugely respected and admired in the BBC."
A previously unknown group, the Brigades of Tawheed and Jihad, said on April 15 that it had killed Johnston to support demands for the release of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel. There has been no confirmation of the claim, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has said repeatedly he has information that Johnston is still alive.
Johnston's kidnapping is the latest in a string of abductions of foreign journalists in the Gaza Strip in recent months. But his captivity has stretched far longer than any of the others.
Foreign and Palestinian journalists have been holding similar demonstrations on both sides of Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. Palestinian media have also held strikes protesting the government's inability to find Johnston.


Updated : 2021-04-12 06:50 GMT+08:00