Japan stunned by video claiming death of 1 of 2 IS hostages

FILE – This file image taken from an online video released by the Islamic State group’s al-Furqan media arm on Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015, purports to show the group threatening to kill two Japanese hostages that the militants identify as Kenji Goto Jogo, left, and Haruna Yukawa, right, unless a $200 million ransom is paid within 72 hours. Japan’s government is investigating a new message purported to be from the Islamic State group Saturday, Jan. 24, 2015 holding two Japanese hostages. The Associated Press could not verify the contents of the message, which varied greatly from previous videos released by the Islamic State group, which now holds a third of both Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo, File)

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Japan PM in Jerusalem demands release of Islamic State hostages

A masked Islamic State fighter speaks during a ransom video demanding $200 million for the release of two Japanese citizens. (screen capture: YouTube)

A masked Islamic State fighter speaks during a ransom video demanding $200 million for the release of two Japanese citizens. (screen capture: YouTube)

Shinzo Abe says lives of two captive Japanese ‘top priority’ after video emerges demanding $200 million ransom

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Police hold talks with gunman after 5 hostages flee Sydney cafe

Armed police are seen outside a cafe in the central business district of Sydney on December 15, 2014. Hostages were being held inside a cafe in central Sydney on December 15 with an Islamic flag displayed against a window, according to witnesses and reports. (Photo credit: AFP/Peter Parks)

Armed police are seen outside a cafe in the central business district of Sydney on December 15, 2014. Hostages were being held inside a cafe in central Sydney on December 15 with an Islamic flag displayed against a window, according to witnesses and reports. (Photo credit: AFP/Peter Parks)

Assailant has hostages call media to make demands after storming coffee shop in city center; number of people being held put at less than 30; defense chief Ya’alon offers help to Australian authorities

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American, South African hostages killed in Yemen

FILE – In this Monday, Feb. 11, 2013 file photo, Luke Somers, 33, an American photojournalist who was kidnapped over a year ago by al-Qaida, poses for a picture during a parade marking the second anniversary of the revolution in Sanaa, Yemen. Somers has been killed in a failed rescue attempt, his sister said Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014. Lucy Somers told The Associated Press that she and her father learned of her 33-year-old brother Luke Somers’ death from FBI agents at 0500 GMT (12 a.m. EST) Saturday. (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed, File)

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Calif. gunman killed after shooting 2 hostages in trunk

KCBS-TV/Associated Press – This video image provided by KCBS-TV shows the site of s shooting Friday Oct. 25, 2013 ion Ridgecrest, Calif. A homicide suspect was killed by police on this Mojave Desert highway early Friday after a lengthy pursuit in which the man fired at vehicles and two hostages in his car trunk, authorities said.

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Gunman Storm Libyan TV, Seize Staff

Gunmen stormed headquarters of a privately-owned Libyan television station on Thursday, abducting the channel’s owner and four journalists.

gunman (illustrative)

gunman (illustrative)
AFP file

SOURCE

Gunmen stormed the headquarters of a privately-owned Libyan televisionstation on Thursday, abducting the channel’s owner and four journalists.

Alassema TV owner Jomaa Al-Osta and four of his staff were detained by unknown assailants, the parliament’s human rights commission said in a statement.

According to the AFP news agency, the commission urged the interior ministry “to intervene immediately to release the prisoners.”

Mohammed al-Sharkassi, an anchor at Alassema TV, told a national news channel he was seized briefly outside his workplace by “individuals who identified themselves as former rebels.”

Speaking on Libya al-Ahrar television, Sharkassi said he was questioned by his abductors and told he would be freed “on condition that I leave Tripoli.”

He said his abductors were “former rebels from Tripoli… angered by the editorial policies of Alassema TV”, but did not elaborate.  

The station is known to be close to the liberal coalition which came ahead of Islamists in last July’s legislative elections.

Mahmud Jibril, who heads the National Forces Alliances coalition, was an architect of the 2011 revolt that toppled Moamer Qaddafi.

Libya al-Ahrar said that several attackers, some of them armed, stormed the headquarters of Alassema TV on Thursday afternoon.

“They entered through the windows,” it said.

Libya’s official Lana news agency also reported that unidentified assailants stormed the channel, causing “great damage”, but did not elaborate.  

Security forces were deployed outside Alassema TV following the attack, according toAFP.

Private newspapers and television stations have flourished in Libya since the ouster of Qaddafi, who had banned private media and any criticism of more than four decades of his iron-fisted rule.

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