Rome/Islamabad : A British hostage of Pakistani origin has appeared in a video in which he appeals for help to raise the ransom of $10 million demanded by his captors, a militant group calling itself Asian Tigers
Speaking in the video obtained by the Rome-based news agency Adnkronos International AKI, Asad Qureshi, a journalist and documentary-maker, said the group have set May 15 as the deadline by which the ransom must be paid.
The video appeared to contradict reports last week that Qureshi together with a fellow hostage, Sultan Amir Tarar had been released following pressure exerted on their captors by Afghan Taliban fighters, AKI reported.
Tarar, together with another alleged former Pakistani intelligence official, Khaled Khwaja, and Qureshi were abducted March 26 in Pakistan’s volatile North Waziristan region close to Afghanistan.
The Asian Tigers, a previously unknown group, reportedly killed Khwaja April 30.
In the video, Qureshi says he is in good health and that he doesn’t know where he is being held.
He urges that his employer be contacted and made aware of his “predicament”.
Qureshi said his captors had given him 10 days to arrange the money. He said he had urged them to extend this period to 15 days.
“Please help me raise the amount,” he said. He described the Asian Tigers as a “very strong force.”