08/31/2004, 00.00
iraq - nepal
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Twelve Nepalese hostages killed

"People of Iraq, do not sympathize with Allawi government", terrorists say

Baghad (AsiaNews/AP) - A Web site linked to an Iraqi militant group showed a video of what was purported to be the killing of 12 Nepalese workers by militants who had kidnapped them.

The 12 had been reported kidnapped Aug. 20. The Nepalese workers had entered Iraq to work as cooks and cleaners for a Jordanian company catering to US occupation barracks.

Nepalese Ambassador to Qatar Shyamananda Suman, who handles the country's affairs in the region, told that he did not have any official confirmation of the killing.

A statement on the Web site with the video was signed "Ansar al-Sunna Army" and vowed to keep fighting the Americans in Iraq.

"America today has used all its force, as well as the help of others, to fight Islam under the so-called war on terror, which is nothing but a vicious crusade against Muslims," the statement said.

At the end of the four-minute video, a man reads another statement off-camera, vowing to fight the Iraqi government. "We will work on exterminating them until the last fighter," he said. "Do not sympathize with this impure group, they have left their country and travelled thousands of kilometres to work with the crusader American forces and to support it in its war against Islam and holy warriors," the Ansar al-Sunna statement said.

The statement addressed the Nepalese government "and other lap dogs of the Jews and the Christians," saying executions would be the fate of "every agent, traitor and spy."

Dr Harith al-Dhari, Secretary General of the Association of Muslim Scholars (AMS), the leading Sunni Islam religious authority in Iraq, strongly condemned the execution. "We are against killing hostages, particularly if it has been a group execution. Those 12 Nepalese hostages are simple people. They might have been deceived to serve the occupation forces," he said. "I wish they had not been treated so cruelly like that."

Nepal has sent no troops to Iraq despite requests from the United States. Armed Nepalese personnel work for security firms guarding foreign contractors in Iraq.

At least 80 people have been kidnapped by insurgents and criminal gangs in Iraq in recent months.

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See also
The Holy See: international community must support Allawi
Thank you America, Allawi tells Congress, with the elections we shall defeat terrorism
Terror group beheads second US hostage, while British hostage pleads for his life
Shiites targeted to foil elections
Carnage at US base in Mosul, 22 dead and more than 60 injured


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