ISIS Demands $6.6 Million, Release of Scientist for US Captive

Image: ISIS Demands $6.6 Million, Release of Scientist for US Captive Pakistani civil society activists hold a placard showing Aafia Siddiqui and shout slogans protesting the U.S. court verdict against U.S.-detained Pakistani woman Aafia Siddiqui at a protest in Islamabad on Feb. 8, 2010. (Aamir Qureshi/Getty Images)

Tuesday, 26 Aug 2014 05:38 PM

By Greg Richter

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
The Islamic State (ISIS) is demanding $6.6 million and the release of a female Pakistani scientist with al-Qaida ties in exchange for a 26-year-old American woman.

The American hostage's family asked that she not be identified. She was captured a year ago while doing humanitarian work in Syria.

The terrorist group wants the United States to release 42-year-old Aafia Siddiqui, a neuroscientist who studied at MIT. Siddiqui was convicted in 2010 of trying to kill two American officials.

She is serving an 86-year prison sentence in a mental ward of a federal prison in Fort Worth, Texas.

The Daily Beast quotes "Securing the City," a book written by one of its editors, Christopher Dickey, saying that Siddiqui has a long history with al-Qaida.

She was recruited by Ali Abd al-Azziz Ali, also known as Ammar al-Baluchi, because of her scientific knowledge and political and religious connections, Dickey said.

"U.S. officials eventually said they feared that Siddiqui's scientific background would give her the expertise to help al-Qaida build biological or chemical weapons," Dickey wrote.

After leaving the United States, she was captured in Afghanistan.

American officers attempted to interrogate her after they had found "bomb-making instructions, chemical weapons and briefing notes about potential attacks on American landmarks." But she assaulted the officers, turning a rifle on them.

She was found guilty in a New York court of seven counts of attempted murder, armed assault, using a firearm, and assaulting American officers, the Beast reported.

Her case has become a cause célèbre in her native Pakistan, and her freedom is regularly sought by groups critical of American foreign policy in the Middle East. Petitions of two websites have garnered more than 100,000 signatures.

ABC News reported that her family issued a statement saying that while they continue to fight for her release, they do not want it tied to terrorists' demands.

"If the issue is true, we would like to state that our family does not have any connections to such groups or actions," the letter reads. "We believe in a struggle that is peaceful and dignified. Associating Aafia's name with acts of violence is against everything we are struggling for."

The woman being held by ISIS is one of three remaining U.S. hostages in the group's custody after the execution this month of journalist James Foley.

Related Stories:

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

John Kerry: 'No Problem' With 'Thoughtful' Palestinian Bid

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 16:52 PM

The United States has no problem with Palestinians putting a draft resolution to the UN aiming to boost their hopes fo . . .

Donald Trump on 2016 Run: 'I Am Considering It Very Strongly'

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 16:46 PM

Donald Trump is "very strongly" mulling a bid for the White House in 2016, and is inclined to throw his hat into the rin . . .

Dick Morris: Hillary's Biggest Fear Is Elizabeth Warren

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 16:06 PM

Welcome to 2008. It's back to the future. The very same elements that toppled Hillary Clinton's "inevitable" nomination  . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved