Latest French hostage released
I posted that that Mohammed Ouathi, a soundman working for the French TV station France 3, was kidnapped in Gaza on August 14. He was freed yesterday. Of course, the kidnapping was blamed on the joos. The Jerusalem Post explains (emphasis mine):
Palestinian Authority security officials told The Jerusalem Post that Mohammad Ouathi, a soundman for France 3 television, had been kidnapped by members of the Popular Resistance Committees, an alliance of various armed militias.
Earlier this week, the group held a press conference in Gaza City in which its leaders announced that they had nothing to do with the abduction of Ouathi, a Frenchman of Algerian origin. The group even claimed that Israel was behind the kidnapping.
However, members of the group, which is dominated by Fatah gunmen, dismissed claims that they had been holding the journalist, saying their members actually helped free him.
Ouathi was kidnapped on August 15 by three masked gunmen near his hotel in Gaza City. It was the latest in a series of kidnappings involving foreigners in the Gaza Strip in recent weeks.
Outahi was greeted by French diplomats upon his arrival at a PA security installation and appeared to be in good shape.
. . .
In another incident in the West Bank, arsonists set fire to the offices of the Palestinian Legislative Council in Hebron on Sunday night. No group claimed responsibility for the attack, which is yet another sign of increased lawlessness in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
France2 news last night showed (23 minutes into the program) the French Minister for Foreign Affairs saying “the kidnapping was due to a misunderstanding among Palestinian groups”.
The same France2 news broadcast, while discussing security concerns regarding satellite photography broadcast on the internet, stated it is troublesome because “people with bad intentions” (personnes malintentionnés) might use it for nefarious purposes. Heaven forbid they use the word “terroristes”.