Op-Ed: Father of two Alan Henning, 47, from Greater Manchester, England, the man threatened by ISIS militants in the beheading video of David Haines spoke of his desire to "help" ease the humanitarian crisis before setting out to Syria.
Alan like David was a volunteer aid worker before he was snatched and kept hostage. Like David he was quickly captured by extremist fighters. He had travelled to the region twice previously but the convoy in which he travelled in December 2013 had just crossed into Syria when he was kidnapped. Majid Freeman, 27, a friend of Mr Henning who was with him when he was captured has urged the militants to "spare him" and "let him come home". Henning was the only non Muslim in the convoy. BBC News has posted footage of Mr Henning describing why he wanted to deliver aid to Syria and a group representing British Muslim aid workers has posted a separate video on youtube, titled "a call of mercy" appealing for Mr Henning's release. At time of writing ISIS militants have released the footage of three men beheaded, two US journalists, James Foley and Steven Sotloff and UK aid worker David Haines. Both the US and UK authorities have vowed to hunt down the killers but also not to bow to their ransom demands. This added to current action by the west against ISIS forces jeopardises the lives of hostages. The knock on effect will surely be a lack of aid workers prepared to travel to the region? That in turn will lead to a deeper humanitarian crisis. A downward spiral of immense proportions. Sooner or later the supply of hostages must surely run out? The need for more captives increases the risks to journalists and other foreign workers in the region. The net is allegedly closing in around Jihadi John the man believed to be responsible for each beheading. Time is running out though for Mr Henning and other hostages. Should the goverment back pedal and pay the ransom? Sources BBC News Channel 4
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