< link rel="DCTERMS.isreplacedby" href="http://bokertov.typepad.com/ btb/" >

Friday, July 30, 2004

Palestinian Militants Abduct Foreign Activists

AP: NABLUS, West Bank - Palestinian gunmen abducted three foreign church volunteers, including an American, in Nablus late Friday, Palestinian security officials said.

Five gunmen seized the foreigners as they were returning to the home where they were staying around midnight, the officials said. The volunteers were citizens of the United States, Britian and Ireland, the officials said. Their identities were not released. Several foreign women accompanying them were allowed to go free.

The officials said the hostages apparently were taken to the Balata refugee camp near Nablus. No reason for the abduction was immediately given.

The Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, which is affiliated with Yasser Arafat's Fatah movement, said the kidnappers could belong to a splinter group of Al Aqsa. He said the group was helping authorities in the search for the hostages.

UPDATE: Hostages were released unharmed a couple of hours later. The whole thing is ridiculous.