Remember when the Germans released a terrorist and gave money to Zarqawi to gain the release of Osthoff? Here it looks like they are doing it again to gain the release of two engineers who were taken hostage. The Germans claim the release is only due to his pending appeal, but I doubt it.
February 7, 2006- BERLIN (Reuters) - Mounir El Motassadeq, a Morrocan man convicted in August of membership in a terrorist organization and sentenced to seven years in prison, will be released early, an official in the Hamburg Justice Ministry said on Tuesday.
DW staff (jam) www.dw-world.de © Deutsche Welle.
No Progress in German Hostage Crisis There has been no word from the kidnappers since this video from Jan. 31
The German government has no news so far of two German hostages in Iraq after a Friday-night deadline set by their captors expired. Berlin is still trying to establish contact with the kidnappers.
In a videotape broadcast last week by Qatar's Al-Jazeera television network the hostage takers said they were from a group calling itself "Followers of Unity and Prophetic Tradition" and made demands towards the German government, including closing the German embassy in Baghdad, ending all collaboration with the new Iraqi government and withdrawing German companies operating in Iraq.
In the videotape, the kidnappers gave Germany 72 hours to act on their demands.
The two hostages, Rene Bräunlich, 31, and Thomas Nitzschke, 28, work for a German gas equipment installation company and were snatched near the Baiji oil refinery compound by armed men in military uniforms.