February 05, 2008

Taliban Says Korean Hostages, "Exchanged for Money"

Via Ground Report:

Peshawar: A Taliban official, Ustad Mohmmad Yasir, in a fresh interview, admits the group had released 19 South Korea Christian volunteers after receiving payment.

There were some reports in media that this was a multi-million dollars business, but the Taliban and the South Korean and Afghan governments officially had denied these reports and many times they had said that the hostages were released without any payment to the Taliban.

Ustad Mohammad Yasir is a senior official of the Taliban who was arrested by Pakistani intelligence forces in 2005 and then was handed over to the Afghan government but was exchanged for the Italian journalist Daniel Mastrogiacomo in March 2007. Now he is the head of information of the Taliban....

...Question: You mentioned the Christian missionaries. Taliban took some Korean missionaries as hostages and then released them for money. Does Islam and Afghan culture allow this?

Answer: The problem was that many of them were women. Had we killed them or made them slaves then you would hear the cries of the world and also it was not beneficial to let them go for free. So it was the only good way to exchange them for money.(emphasis mine)

Only good way? the only good way is not to kidnap people to start with.

Interesting that the Taliban are starting to become interested in their image. They have also declared that those they murder should no longer be beheaded. As if they can ever erase the barbarism we've witnessed. As if we'll somehow forget.


Hat Tip: Abdul.

By Howie at 11:26 AM | Comments |

January 26, 2008

Former Korean Hostages Wed

Happy news for two of the South Korean hostages kidnapped last summer in Afghanistan (via Korea Times):

After the storm comes the calm: Two hostages released by Taliban militants in Afghanistan last year tied the knot Saturday at Saemmul Church in Bundang, Gyeonggi Province.


By at 09:12 PM | Comments |

September 18, 2007

Korean Christian Hostage Mastermind Killed!

Good news, the Taliban commander who was responsible for the kidnapping of South Korean Christian missionaries--and the subsequent murder of two of them--has been killed.

Revenge. She is a bitch.


Mullah Abdullah Jan, the Taliban commander of Qara Bagh district in Ghazni province, was among the 12 killed in the strike on a mud-brick housing compound overnight, said Ghazni provincial police chief Gen. Ali Shah Ahmadzai.

Jan watched as his fighters stopped and kidnapped a tour bus full of South Koreans in July, Ahmadzai said. Officials previously said they had killed another commander behind the kidnappings, a Mullah Mateen, but Ahmadzai said Jan was higher-ranking.

Kill all the Taliban, let Allah sort them out.

Thanks to GM.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:17 AM | Comments |

September 12, 2007

Korean Hostages Told to Convert or Die by Taliban

No Stockholm syndrome here as the freed Korean Christian hostages describe the brutality of their Islamist captors. Imagine that, the Taliban tried to force the Korean hostages to convert. BBC:

"We were beaten with a tree branch or kicked around. Some kidnappers threatened us with death at gunpoint to force us to follow them in chanting their Islamic prayer for conversion," said Jae Chang-hee.

"I was beaten many times. They pointed a rifle and bayonet at me and tried to force me to convert." ...

The most difficult moment, when I had a big fear of death, was when the Taleban shot [a] video.

"All 23 of us leaned against a wall and armed Taleban aimed their guns at us, and a pit was before me.

"They said they will save us if we believe in Islam. I almost fainted at the time and I still cannot look at cameras," she said...

"One day, a Taleban called Bae and checked his first and last names and took him out of the room.

"Bae didn't even look at us when he was leaving the room. He only said 'Overcome with faith'," Ms Han said, in tears.

Bae was murdered on that day.

Hat tip: Tom

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:07 AM | Comments |

August 31, 2007

Millions Paid for South Korean Hostages

So, in addition to surrendering to the Taliban by pulling out their troops, then becoming dhimmis by submitting to Islamic law and forbidding missionaries, South Korea also was extorted and paid ransom? Unfreakingbelievable!


By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:58 AM | Comments |

August 30, 2007

UPDATE: FREE!! Remaining Korean Hostages to be Freed Today [BONUS: email or call Taliban spokesman]

Update by Howie. The remaining seven hostages have been released. Four in one group, three in another.


Keep your fingers crossed that the Taliban scum actually let them go unharmed.

Then take out your lucky rabbit's foot, rub three times, and say a prayer to the patron saint of vengeance that a U.S. special forces team eliminates their Taliban captors within the hour.


Taliban insurgents are set to free the remaining seven South Korean hostages in Afghanistan within the next few hours, a spokesman for the militant group said Thursday.

The remaining hostages will be released from 4 p.m. (1130 GMT) in "groups of three and four," told Yonhap News Agency in a telephone conversation through an interpreter.


email Qari Yousuf Ahmadi: qarimohammadyousaf@yahoo.com
call Qari Yousuf Ahmadi: (011 from US, then) 8821621515539

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:59 AM | Comments |

August 29, 2007

8 Hostages Go Free, Korea Loses It's Dignity

Thank God that the Taliban have released 8 of the remaining 19 hostages. However grateful we are, though, we should never forget that the price paid for these hostages' lives are the countless numbers of other hostages that will be taken. The lesson learned by the Taliban terrorists is simple: taking hostages works. Thus, more hostages will be taken.

We pray that God's vengeance on the Taliban will be swift and in the form of bullets from the end of a Marine rifle.


Afghanistan's Taliban militants on Wednesday released five more South Korean hostages, raising to eight the number set free following an agreement with South Korean officials, according to a mediator.

The four women and one man were handed over by elders of Ghazni to officials of the International Committee of the Red Cross outside Ghazni, capital of the province of the same name, Haji Zahir, who has been mediating between the Taliban and South Korean negotiators, told Kyodo News.

Again, let us not forget that the Taliban murdered two of the hostages for the 'crime' of spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Meanwhile, a bit of clarity from an Afghan minister. Via AllahP this AP report:

"One has to say that this release under these conditions will make our difficulties in Afghanistan even bigger," the country's commerce minister, Amin Farhang, told Germany's Bayerischer Rundfunk radio. "We fear that this decision could become a precedent. The Taliban will continue trying to take hostages to attain their aims in Afghanistan."
Well, duh.

In addition, it also legitimizes the Taliban. When diplomats meet with a terrorist organization, it adds legitimacy to their cause and it helps them recruit more terrorists:

"Maybe they (the Taliban) did not achieve all that they demanded, but they achieved a lot in terms of political credibility," said Mustafa Alani, director of security and terrorism studies at the Dubai-based Gulf Research Center. "The fact that the Koreans negotiated with them directly and more or less in their territory ... is in itself an achievement."
People generally only fight if they believe they can win. By negotiating with the Taliban sympathizers are led to the inevitable conclusion that maybe the Taliban are a bigger threat than they thought and perhaps they have a chance of beating NATO forces.

Good job Korea, all the murdered hostages, beheading victims, and dead NATO troops that will result from your capitulation thank you.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:04 AM | Comments |

August 28, 2007

Koreans Bow to Taliban Demands, Hostages to Go Free

The scumbags in the Taliban have agreed to free the remaining hostages. Do you think this makes them look good? Remember, they already murdered two hostages. Oh, and the fact that they took hostages in the first place should tell you something--they are sumhuman filth!

But thank God for all miracles small and great, even if the price tag is high. It's really the hostage catch 22---we celebrate the fact that the 19 hostages will be coming home but mourn the fact that more hostages will be taken because South Korea bowed to at least some of the Taliban's demands. But, as Michelle said, "I’ll believe it when they are all back safe and alive."

The price? South Korea will withdraw all troops and ban Korean nationals from going to Afghanistan as Christian missionaries.

The last part is no big deal since it is already against the law in the newly "liberated" Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to try to convert Muslims. The only "missionaries" presently allowed in the country are those on humanitarian missions. Which is what the South Koreans were in Afghanistan for, on a medical mission.

According to Wikipedia the South Korean military has about 60 medics and 150 engineers in Afghanistan. So, it's not a big loss in strictly military terms.

However inconsequential the demands may seem, though, the fact that the South Koreans a) negotiated b) capitulated sends the wrong message and could have some very negative long term consequences. By negotiating with the Taliban the South Koreans legitimize them.

By capitulating they send a very clear signal to the Taliban: taking hostages works.

What we are witnessing is the Spaniardization of South Korea.

And as AllahP reminds us, the Taliban have other hostages they are still holding.

One of them, Rudolf Blechschmidt, was recently seen in a video saying that he was in bad shape. Another German hostage taken with Blechschmidt, Ruediger Diedrich, was murdered in cold blood by the Taliban

A third hostage, Christina Meier, was recently rescued. It boggles the mind that a rescue attempt was not attempted for the South Koreans.

For a more complete chronicling:
Hostage archives
Hostages: South Korean

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:58 AM | Comments |

August 23, 2007

NYC Muslim Calls Korean Hostages "Terrorists", Smiles at thought of Daniel Pearl Style Beheading

American Muslim convert and New York City native Yousef al-Khattab outdoes himself and compares the Korean hostages to "terrorists" and suggests that because they are guilty of the "crime" of trying to convert Muslim children that they are worthy of Daniel Pearl's death--beheading.

Khattab's Youtube account was suspended because of outrage generated by LGF and other blog readers, including this one, over remarks praising the murder of Daniel Pearl. It looks like al-Khattab has stealthily reentered the Youtube community as SeeFourAtUrDoor. We know this is Khattab because it has his photo up (image right) and also a link to his website where the video is embedded and labeled "Korean Terrorist Crusaders in Afghanistan".

In his Youtube description of the video which shows Afghan children reciting Christian prayers and singing songs, Khattab, who was born Joseph Cohen before converting from Judaism to Islam and taking a new name, says:

Don't fool yourselves the Taliban are not barbarians like the US & it's coalition forces NAY, these Korean Crusaders were tried and sentenced just as the spy Daniel Pearl was. No apology from this Muslim, rather a BIG smile and lots of Duaa (supplications) for my Taliban brothers in Islam.

P.S. I neither support nor condone the Taliban.

He doesn't support them, but it makes him smile to think that the Taliban will behead these civilian hostages? And he asks for prayers for the Taliban, who he, you know, "doesn't support"?

How long before Youtube suspends Khattab's account this time? Hopefully sooner than all the other awful jihadi supporters on Youtube.

I had seen this video several times before on Islamic forum, all with similar reactions, but hadn't thought twice about it until Howie pointed out that Khattab had it up at his website and Youtube page with his despicable comments.

I'm not saying that trying to convert children to ones religion is the best way for any type of missionary to go--Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, or whatever-- but for whatever lack of class that might show it certainly isn't something worthy of death.

Of course, Islam alone officially prescribes the death penalty (as a maximum penalty) for both the apostate and the missionary trying to induce the Muslim to leave the faith. Barbaric.

But I find it absolutely outrageous that an American living in New York City would have such sentiments!

It's not even clear why the children are there. Islamists on the forums linking the video make it sound as if the children are tricked into saying the Christian prayers and songs. But it's not clear that they aren't the children of Christian converts. Nor is it even clear that those leading the prayers and songs are Korean missionaries let alone the same Koreans being held hostage by the Taliban.

I hope the NYPD and the FBI have an eye on Khattab. I know he claims he doesn't support terrorism, but that means nothing from a guy who excludes the beheading murder of civilian hostages from his definition of terror.

Video below.

UPDATE: Michelle Malkin notes that today is day 35 of the Korean hostage crisis and the Taliban have renewed their threats to murder the hostages. Check out the photo she posts of the hostages, do they look like 'terrorists' to you? Somewhere on the streets of NYC Khattab is smiling.......

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:55 AM | Comments |

August 21, 2007

3 Korean Hostages Begin Hunger Strike

Pray for the strength of these brave captives (via Gulf Times):

Three South Koreans held in Afghanistan by Taliban militants have gone on hunger strike to demand that all 19 remaining hostages be held together rather than in separate groups, South Korean state news agency Yonhap reported yesterday.

Citing an informed source speaking on condition of anonymity, Yonhap said one male and two female hostages went on hunger strike from Sunday morning.

The hostages are reported to have been split into as many as five groups and are being detained at different locations in Ghazni province in central Afghanistan, where they were taken hostage on July 19.

The latest round of negotiations between the Taliban and the South Korean government has come to a standstill (no surprise there) and Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi said that further talks are pointless:
Further talks would be "a waste of time," Ahmadi said, saying that the Taliban's leadership council would now consider the further fate of the remaining 19 South Korean hostages.

A source involved in mediation between the Taliban and the South Korean officials said the Koreans yesterday sent a delegation of tribal chiefs to persuade the Taliban into a solution.

"The Koreans sent a delegation to the Taliban to ask them what they want other than a prisoner exchange," the source said, asking not to be named because of the sensitivity of the issue.

I'm not really sure how effective a hunger strike is going to be against the Taliban since the basic premise is that the striker is more valuable to the captor alive than dead. When used against civilized countries like the U.S. or Britain, it is a powerful weapon of non-violent resistance. Against a barbaric enemy like the Taliban, I'm afraid it's more like throwing appetizers to a hungry crocodile. However, maybe it will steel the resolve of the Koreans and Afghans to go for a rescue mission, such as the one which liberated German hostage Christina Meier on Sunday.

The Jawa's complete Korean Hostage archive

By at 11:38 AM | Comments |

August 13, 2007

2 Female Korean Hostages Released

An answered prayer (via Fox):

GHAZNI, Afghanistan — Two South Korean women hostages kidnapped by Taliban militants in mid-July were handed over to officials from the International Committee of the Red Cross on Monday, the first significant breakthrough in a hostage drama now more than three weeks old.

The two women, who broke into tears after seeing the Red Cross officials, got out of a dark gray Toyota Corolla driven by an Afghan elder and into one of two waiting Red Cross SUVs. The women did not say anything to reporters who had been alerted to the handoff location by a Taliban spokesman.

The women, who the Taliban have said are ill, were among 23 South Koreans kidnapped by Taliban militants on July 19.

The release is the first breakthrough in the hostage drama, which took a downturn in late July when two male captives were executed by gunfire.

Let's continue to pray for the safety of the remaining hostages, that they will receive freedom, and that their captors will receive the same mercy and compassion given to Bae Hyung-kyu and Shim Sung-min.


The South Korean Foreign Ministry identified the freed hostages as Kim Kyung-ja and Kim Ji-na. Previous media reports said they were 37 and 32 years old, respectively.

By at 08:53 AM | Comments |

August 09, 2007

Video: "Dear People of Afghanistan" (Warning: Tissue Alert)

The families of the kidnapped S. Korean hostages plead directly to the Afghan people to help in returning their loved ones safely home. The spokesman explains why the Koreans went to Afghanistan:

"They went to Afghanistan with the burden in their heart to pay back the debt of love that Korea received unconditionally from numerous countries during the war 50 years ago. They are our sons and daughters. Each one of these twenty-one people under the custody of the Taliban is a precious child to us.

These children went to act on their love beyond race, religion, and borders. Tragic war that tore Korea into pieces is not forgotten. Instead, it is still engraved in our hearts. This is why the Koreans are ready to go wherever the people under suffering may be.

[. . . ]

Thanks to people like those 21 men and women in hostage who helped Korea from all over the world, we are now who we are. We believe in the near future children of Afghanistan will also act in love in other needy countries like those 21 Koreans.

Please send our children so that we can meet them alive. We believe these children will become strong advocates of Afghan when they return to Korea. In that respect I say that we are the one and only country that is in a unique position to be capable of understanding Afghanistan.

Dear people of Afghanistan, though we speak different languages, we believe that our heart will speak to your heart. We believe that Korea is still Afghanistan's friend and hope. Please send our 21 children home that we may hug them once again. May we hug our children once again? Can you send us our children? Please. Please send our family back."

Please keep praying that these families may be blessed by the safe and soon return of their precious loved ones.

H/t Michelle Malkin

Crossposted at Not Ready for my Burqua

By at 11:52 AM | Comments |

August 07, 2007

Hell Freezes Over: AP Calls it "Murder"

Buried in this article about the Taliban now saying that they will swap the Korean women hostages for females held in Afghan jails comes the most shocking thing I've seen in the AP since the beginning of the war:

Ahmadi, the Taliban spokesman, reiterated a murder threat against the Christian aid workers.
Seriously, I've never seen any of the major wires call what the Taliban routinely do to their hostages murder. It's always execution or simply killing, but never murder.

Sorta related: Is my old pen-pal and Taliban spokesman Qari Yousuf Ahmadi really two people?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:32 PM | Comments |

A Letter to My Wife Held Hostage by the Taliban

Have tissue ready. A video letter from Ryu Hang-sik to his wife Kim Yun-yeong who is being held hostage by the Taliban.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:15 PM | Comments |

Korean Leftists Behind Hostage Demonstrations

Looks like a protest to help the South Korean hostages? It isn't. It's a front for a group that advocates the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Korea and unification with the North.

Sweetness and Light has the info on SPARK, the people behind the protest. Hat tip: Brian.

We continue to demand that the Taliban release the hostages unconditionally and support the position of no quid-pro-quo for hostages. The result of paying ransom or giving in to hostage demands is always the same: more hostages taken.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:03 PM | Comments |

August 06, 2007

Someone Finally Paying Attention to Korean Hostages in U.S.

Michelle Malkin to the rescue. She'll be talking about the murderous pieces of filth in the Taliban holding 21 Christian hostages tonight on Fox News. They already murdered two of them.

I hope she mentions the fact that in the first few days of the crisis, the Taliban accused the medical missionaries of "crimes against Islam". Under traditional Islamic law, those found trying to convert a Muslim may be punished with death.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:43 PM | Comments |

August 04, 2007

Taliban: No Doctors for Sick Hostages

The Taliban has refused access to a team of Afghan doctors who volunteered to treat two seriously ill S. Korean hostages. Via Monsters and Critics:

The rebels did not trust the doctors, spokesman Qari Mohammad Yusif Ahmadi told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa.

If the hostages died because they had received the wrong treatment, then the Taliban would be held responsible for their deaths, he said.

Ahmadi had said on Wednesday that two of the abducted women were so ill they could die.

The Taliban had no medicine for them, he said.

Never mind that the Taliban would be responsible for their deaths in any case, since they were the ones who kidnapped them. We've already seen how successful the Taliban's treatment of sick captives is. Just ask Bae Hyung-kyu and Ruediger Diedrich.

Korean Hostage Archive

By at 10:44 AM | Comments |

August 02, 2007

S. Korea Negotiates With Taliban Over Hostages

Despite reports yesterday that a rescue mission was underway to free the 21 remaining S. Korean hostages held by the Taliban, the U.S. and South Korea said today that no military action is being considered. Afghan troops, meanwhile, are conducting raids in the Ghazni area where the captives are being held, but insist that they are not aimed at the Taliban who seized the kidnapped Christians. Just other Taliban. Who just happen to be in the area.

Via Monsters and Critics:

Kabul/Seoul - The purported spokesman for Afghanistan's Taliban insurgents said Thursday that their members had the first direct talk by telephone with South Korean delegates aimed at securing the release of 21 remaining hostages held by the rebels for the past two weeks.

The spokesman said that the conversation was held between the South Korean ambassador to Kabul and a representative of the Taliban rebels after the South Korean government announced its readiness for direct negotiations.

'Today there was a contact via telephone,' Taliban spokesman Qari Mohammad Yusif Ahmadi told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa by phone from an undisclosed location. 'Actually they have not asked us for face-to-face talks yet, and if they ask us for a meeting and specify the place and time, our representatives are in Ghazni, they are ready to meet them.'

Ahmadi said they will accept no substitute for the prisoner release they are demanding, and that South Korea should ask the international community and United Nations for help.

UPDATE: U.S. won't rule out force to free Afghan hostages

“All pressures need to be applied to the Taliban to get them to release these hostages,” said Richard Boucher, assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asia. “We hope that pressure can be effective in a variety of ways, the goal is to get these people released unharmed, to get them released peacefully and safely.”

Korean Hostage Archive
Video & Images: Korean Hostage's Body Found

By at 01:38 PM | Comments |

August 01, 2007

Hostage Rescue Operation Begins Or has it?

UPDATE by Rusty: Reuters withdraws original story:

Please be advised that the Kabul datelined story reporting that an operation to rescue 21 Korean hostages held by the Taliban had begun is wrong. The official cited in the story did not make the comment reported. There will be no substitute story.
That's odd....via Michelle who has constant updates.
Via Reuters:

GHAZNI, Afghanistan -- A military operation to rescue the remaining 21 Korean hostages held by Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan began on Wednesday, hours after a Taliban deadline expired, a provincial official said.

"The operation has started," said Khowja Seddiqi, the district chief of Ghazni's Qarabagh district, where the Taliban kidnapped 23 Korean Christian volunteers nearly two weeks ago.

He did not give more details or say which forces were involved.

Any attempt to rescue the hostages is fraught with risk, as the kidnappers have split the 18 women and three men into small groups and are holding them in different locations across the mainly flat terrain.

Pray for the success of this mission and for the safety of the hostages and their rescuers.

By at 08:18 AM | Comments |

July 31, 2007

Video & Images: Korean Hostage's Body Found

A short video of the Afghan Army finding the body of Korean hostage Shim Sung-min, murdered by the Taliban. May he rest in peace and may the pigs and scum who killed him meet justice in the form of a bullet to the head.

Warning: Disturbing images and video below. The monsters in the Taliban murder on a daily basis. However, the vast majority of the victims are Afghan nationals who oppose their extremism and who the Taliban label "traitors".

Friends and family of the Korean hostages should not view. Some of you, though, need to see this. If you are not outraged by the kidnapping and murder of these hostages, then please look. You need to be outraged.

Sung Sin Shim Sung-min_murdered.jpg

Sung Sin Shim Sung-min_murdered2.jpg

Sung Sin Shim Sung-min_murdered3.jpg

Hat tip: Stesoo

Korean hostage archive
Afghan Police Find Body of 2nd Slain Hostage

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:02 AM | Comments |

July 30, 2007

Afghan Police Find Body of 2nd Slain Hostage

Breaking news via AP/Yahoo News:

GHAZNI, Afghanistan - Police in central Afghanistan at daybreak Tuesday discovered the body of a second South Korean hostage slain murdered by the Taliban, officials said.

The victim's body was found in the village of Arizo Kalley in Andar District, some 6 miles west of Ghazni city, said Abdul Rahim Deciwal, the chief administrator in the area.

A purported Taliban spokesman claimed the hardline militia Muslim terrorists killed murdered the Korean hostage Monday evening because the Afghan government failed to release imprisoned insurgents captured Islamist terrorists.

Update by Vinnie: Okay, I've edited this quote with the actual truth.

UPDATE II:Taliban Set New Deadline

The Taliban commanders set a new deadline of noon on Wednesday.

“If the Kabul government does not release the Taliban prisoners, then we will kill after 12 o’clock — we are going to kill Korean hostages,” Ahmadi said. “It might be a man or a woman... It might be one. It might be two, four. It might be all of them.”

UPDATE: A video has been released of the body being found.

Complete Jawa Korean hostage coverage

By at 11:07 PM | Comments |

Video: Korean Hostages in Afghanistan


A video given to al Jazeera from a source they claim is "outside of Afghanistan" showing some of the Korean hostages. The image above is from that video. The video simply shows some of the female hostages, with their hair forcibly covered, and cowering. The original is said to have 3 men in it, thus it is thought to be at least four days old.

Two hostages have already been murdered by the Taliban. They are Shim Sung-min and Bae Hyung-kyu. 19 of the 21 other hostages who were on a humanitarian mission to Afghanistan are women. The Taliban claim that the Christian missionaries are guilty of death under Islamic law. Under traditional sharia--Islamic law--the penalty for trying to convert a Muslim is death.

Both of the videos shown here are from al Jazeera. Interestingly, the reporter in the second video seems to be more of an advocate than a journalist. Not surprising coming from al Jazeera. She slips and says we are trying to pressure the South Korean government. She later goes on to say that the South Korean delegation is actively trying to pressure the Afghan government into a "hostage swap"--the standard Taliban and radical Islamist phrase, meant to equivocate the Korean hostages to Taliban prisoners of war.

Videos below.

Two seperate al Jazeera English reports.

Complete Korean hostages archives.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:36 PM | Comments |

Second Korean Hostage Murdered!

Sung Sin Shim Sung-min.jpg
Shim Sung-min, martyr. Murdered by the Taliban for crimes against Islam. The "crime"? Accused of preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ.

UPDATE 16:40: Video of theTaliban's South Korean hostages.

Breaking news via CNN:

KABUL, Afghanistan (Reuters) -- Taliban kidnappers shot dead a male South Korean hostage on Monday, a spokesman said, accusing the Afghan government of not listening to rebel demands.

"We shot dead a male captive because the government did not listen to our demands," spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousuf told Reuters by telephone.

UPDATE: Michelle finds another article naming the victim as Sung Sin, most likely 29 year old Shim Sung-min. RIP. If any one has a photo of Shim Sung-min, please send it to me so we can honor this martyr. UPDATE: Found pic at Yonhap News.
In a video released yesterday, a female hostage claimed that the Taliban captors threatened to shoot them one-by-one if their demands weren't met.

UPDATE by Rusty: Where is the outrage?!?!!!!

Yesterday, Qari Youseff Mohammed posted this at the Taliban's website:

Since the captivity of 23 Korean, who had come to Afghanistan as a representatives or preachers under control of International Catholic Church to spread Christianity in Afghanistan, Kabul and Korea started negotiations with us but there in not any successful step in negotiations. In the beginning of negotiations we wanted our prisoners to be released and Korean to leave Afghanistan and showed them our plan but Kabul is not true or pure in negotiation and makes cleaver actions to delay the crisis. So we want from Kabul and Korean government to give us positive answer up to 12 o’clock 8th of (Zamari) month. If we don’t get positive response up to selected time Emarat-e-Islami will start killing Korean hostages.
Remember, this is the true face of the regime that Jihad Johnny Walker Lindh was defending, and now the L.A. Times wants him released!

UPDATE: AllahP notices that the Afghan government claims they have the Taliban who are holding the hostages surrounded. The only problem is that we've been hearing that from the beginning. Let's hope it's true and let's hope that they do go in after them. But I'm not holding my breath.

UPDATE 13:05
: I've decided to dedicate a single archive to the Korean hostages in Afghanistan.

UPDATE 13:33
: Tim at OpinionBug:

Folks, pleading with these monsters isn’t going to bring the hostages home. They are in the hands of men controlled by Satanic forces. And they are doing what is in their evil heart. Murder.

The hostages continue to be in our hearts and prayers.

Indeed they will.

UPDATE 13:42: Here are the names of the 19 hostages that are members of the church group: Bae Hyung-kyu (43), Lee Sun-young (37), Seo Myung-hwa (29), Cha Hye-jin (31), Seo Kyung-seok (27), Ko Se-hun (27), Kim Ji-na (32), Kim Kyung-ja (37), Yoo Jung-hwa (39), Je Chang-hee (38), Shim Sung-min (29), Lee Joo-yeon (27), Yoo Kyung-sik (55), Song Byung-woo (33), Lee Young-kyung (22), Han Ji-young (34), Kim Yun-young (35), An Hye-jin (31) and Lee Sung-eun (24). The other hostages are members of an NGO operating in Afghanistan. They have not been identified.

UPDATE 14:14: Fox News has a clip of a video of the hostages aired on al-Jazeera today. UPDATE: So do we. Video of South Korean hostages here.

UPDATE: Taleban rebels turn back on deal and kill second Christian hostage They lied. What a surprise.

Korean Hostage Pleads for Help
Taliban Issues New Deadline To Murder 22 Innocent Christians
A Korean Hostage's Plea for Help
Another Korean Hostage Deadline
What Not to Say When Your Countrymen Are Being Murdered
Taliban Kill MURDER One South Korean Hostage
Time is Up: Taliban to Murder Korean Christian Hostages (UPDATE: Deadline Extended)
Korean Hostages Get A Break, Taliban Spokesman Signs Own Death Warrant
Taliban Demands S. Korea Withdraw Troops from Afghanistan, Or 18 Christian Missionaries Will Be MURDERED
South Korean Christians Kidnapped in Afghanistan

By at 12:16 PM | Comments |

July 29, 2007

Korean Hostage Pleads for Help

This news report contains audio of a hostage's call to the Reuters news service, begging for help. In the call, the woman says they have been held for 9 days (they were kidnapped on July 19). She says the Taliban are threatening to kill them one by one. Continued prayers for their safe release.

UPDATE: Female Korean captive interviewed by Reuters identified as English interpreter

By at 09:05 PM | Comments |

Taliban Issues New Deadline To Murder 22 Innocent Christians

The Taliban have issued another statement. Like little children throwing a tantrum over a lost toy, the Taliban says it will murder 22 innocent people, mosty women, who have nothing to do with holding their fellow criminal gangsters. I've added a few edits to the reuters story.

Via CNN: KABUL, Afghanistan (Reuters) -- Taliban leaders said on Sunday their fighters would kill murder 22 remaining South Korean hostages if the Afghan government did not release rebel prisoners Taliban criminals by a new deadline of 0730 GMT on Monday, a spokesman said.

Taliban spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousuf said the deadline had been set by the Taliban leadership council, headed by elusive leader Mullah Mohammad Omar, giving the threat added weight.

The kidnappers killed murdered the leader of the Korean group on Wednesday, but several further deadlines have passed without the rebels carrying out their threat to kill murder the remaining hostages.

"Since the talks between us, the Kabul administration and Korean government have reached deadlock and they are not honest ... hence, we will start killing murdering the hostages....

Is this Islam? The murder of innocents Christians in the name of Allah because a group of illiterate criminals, who can't even dress themselves, can't get their way?
You can express your offence directly to the Taliban spokesman here.
On the Taliban's old website, they listed this phone number for Qari Mohammad Yousuf, aka "Ahmadi". Presumably, this is how the AP called him.

(011 from US, then) 8821621515539

Or you can e-mail him here: qarimohammadyousaf@yahoo.com

A second phone number for another Taliban spokesman, "Mujahid"

(011 from US, then) 8821621360585

ROPMA. Nothing less than the immediate release of these people will do. Nothing can make up for the life already taken.

A Korean Hostage's Plea for Help
Another Korean Hostage Deadline
What Not to Say When Your Countrymen Are Being Murdered
Taliban Kill MURDER One South Korean Hostage
Time is Up: Taliban to Murder Korean Christian Hostages (UPDATE: Deadline Extended)
Korean Hostages Get A Break, Taliban Spokesman Signs Own Death Warrant
Taliban Demands S. Korea Withdraw Troops from Afghanistan, Or 18 Christian Missionaries Will Be MURDERED
South Korean Christians Kidnapped in Afghanistan

By Howie at 10:26 AM | Comments |

July 27, 2007

Korean Hostages Still Alive as Deadline Passes


The Taliban deadline of noon Friday Afghan time (3:30 a.m. EDT) has expired, but the hostages are still alive, according to the Afghan deputy defense minister. The demands now include the release of 8 Taliban prisoners held by the Afghan government.

Via CNN:

The Taliban spokesman said Afghan authorities had asked for more time after the insurgents presented the government with a list of eight prisoners it wanted released.

"The administration of Kabul has asked us to give them till 12 noon today," spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousuf told Reuters by telephone from an undisclosed location.

"We are waiting for them. We have given them a list of eight prisoners and if they are not released we won't have any other option than to start killing the hostages."

South Korean chief presidential national security adviser, Baek Jong-chun, is expected to arrive in Afghanistan later on Friday to step up efforts to free the hostages.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has pledged not to swap prisoners for hostages after being criticized for releasing five Taliban from jail in March in exchange for an Italian reporter.

The president and ministers have remained silent throughout the latest hostage ordeal.

Let's continue to pray for the Korean hostages and for Rudolf B., the German hostage and his Afghan colleagues, who haven't been heard from for several days now.

Psalm 106:10

He saved them from the hand of the foe; from the hand of the enemy he redeemed them.

A Korean Hostage's Plea for Help
Another Korean Hostage Deadline
What Not to Say When Your Countrymen Are Being Murdered
Taliban Kill MURDER One South Korean Hostage

By at 09:32 AM | Comments |

July 26, 2007

A Korean Hostage's Plea for Help

All of the 22 remaining hostages held by the Taliban are sick and in fear of their lives (we know the compassionate treatment the Taliban gives to sick captives).

Via BBC:

The woman, who identified herself as Yo Syun Ju, told an Afghan reporter by telephone all the hostages were sick.

"Tell them to do something to get us released," she said in an interview carried out in the presence of the Taleban militants holding her captive.

A group of 23 Koreans was abducted a week ago. The kidnappers have since killed one of the hostages.

In an interview obtained by the BBC from an Afghan journalist, Ms Yo, who said she was from Seoul, described her situation as "dangerous", adding: "Day by day it is getting very difficult...

"We are all sick and we have a lot of problems."

We need to pray as hard as we can for these hostages, for the strength to endure their ordeal and not to despair. I love the prayer on Rusty's thread; here's another:

O blessed Lord, who thyself didst undergo the pain and suffering of the Cross; Uphold, we beseech thee, with thy promised gift of strength all those of our brethren who are suffering for their faith in thee. Grant that in the midst of all persecutions they may hold fast by this faith, and that from their stedfastness thy Church may grow in grace and we ourselves in perseverance, to the honour of thy Name, who with the Father and the Holy Ghost art one God, world without end. Amen

Anyone who would like to help keep vigil is welcome to post their favorite prayers or Bible verses in the comments.

By at 02:14 PM | Comments |

Another Korean Hostage Deadline

The Taliban have set yet another deadline before they murder 22 South Korean hostages in Afghanistan. From the Taliban's website:

The deputy interior minister asked us to give them extra time until tomorrow [3:30 EDT] to be able to handle the issue. The Taliban leading council decided to give them time until tomorrow (Friday) noon [local time].

We want again from Korean government, public and parliament to pressurize Afghan government to do something about Korean fate.

Isn't that the central dilemma any time hostages are taken? Giving in to the kidnappers' demands saves the lives of these hostages, but only means that more hostages will be taken, and possibly more lives lost.

See Dub posted this prayer. I think it's appropriate, slightly modified:

ALMIGHTY God, the supreme Governor of all things, whose power no creature is able to resist, to whom it belongeth justly to punish sinners, and to be merciful to those who truly repent; Save and deliver [them], we humbly beseech thee, from the hands of our enemies; that [they], being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore from all perils, to glorify thee, who art the only giver of all victory; through the merits of thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:44 PM | Comments |

What Not to Say When Your Countrymen Are Being Murdered

Asshole defined:

“Of course it shows you quite well how intimate with imperialism the Korean church is, in that it goes to “serve” on a battlefield in a way that speaks the same religious language as the invading nation."
Blaming the victim. That's real classy.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:52 AM | Comments |

July 25, 2007


Bae Hyung-kyu.jpg

Christian martyrs die for their religion. Contrast that to the shahids (martyrs) who nearly always kill for their religion.

The Taliban released these two statements today on their website:

We have given them the list of eight Mujahideen prisoners for exchange (for eight Koreans) but they are dealing with the issue carelessly.

The deadline has already expired. We will kill some of the Koreans today if we don't see any developments in the negotiations the government of President Hamid Karzai was "not honest in negotiations.

The Taliban are not freed, then some of them will probably be killed. Our patience is running out
As every body knows that Afghan government is not true in negotiations as we had given them a list of our Mujahedeen prisoners but we have gotten no response and they have taken no action. There fore we killed one Korean (Han Que) son of (Huchonk) at 3:43 in Qarabagh in Ghazniunder Islamic constitution of Islamic Emirate We want again from Korean government, public and parliament to pressurize Afghan government to do something about Korean fate. If we do not get response from the government left Korean will be killed at 1:00 am.

Pray for Bae Hyung-kyu's family, and for the 22 hostages that are still alive.

Michelle Malkin has more.

Earlier: Taliban MURDER One South Korean Hostage

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:45 PM | Comments |

Taliban Kill MURDER One South Korean Hostage

Breaking news via Fox:

Report: Taliban Kill One South Korean Hostage

KABUL, Afghanistan — A purported Taliban spokesman said Wednesday that one of the 23 South Korean hostages being held in Afghanistan had been killed, according to the Reuters news agency.

Earlier, Aari Yousef Ahmadi, who claims to speak for the militants, said the Afghan government hadn't responded to any of its demands and that the militants would kill "a few" of the hostages.

UPDATE: Via Fox:

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — A police official said Wednesday that Taliban militants told him they shot and killed one of 23 South Korean hostages, while two Western officials said some others from the group of captives were freed and taken to a U.S. military base.

Purported Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi said one of the hostages had been shot and killed around 4 p.m. (7:30 a.m. EDT), and a police official who asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the situation said militants told him the hostage was sick and couldn't walk, and therefore was shot.

Some of the Koreans, meanwhile, were freed and were taken to a U.S. base in Ghazni, according to two Western officials who asked not to be identified because they weren't authorized to speak publicly. The officials did not know how many had been freed.

UPDATE II: Body of South Korean Hostage Recovered, Taliban Reportedly Release Others

Authorities recovered the bullet-riddled body of a South Korean hostage in central Afghanistan on Wednesday, a police officer who discovered the body said.

The male victim had 10 bullet holes in his head, chest and stomach, and was discovered in the Mushaki area of Qarabagh district in Ghazni province, said police officer Abdul Rahman.

UPDATE by Rusty: I hope Vicki doesn't mind me changing the headline. I think MURDER is a more accurate and appropriate word. It boggles the mind why the news media won't use it.....

By at 08:04 AM | Comments |

July 24, 2007

Vigil: Another South Korean Hostage Murder Deadline Passes

As of this writing, the third deadline set by the Taliban for the murder of 23 South Korean Christian doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals being held hostage has expired.

We pray for their immediate release.


This should be the front page story on every newspaper, on every news channel, and the lead on every blog in the nation. The Taliban are very aware of their self image and public pressure does have an affect. Just last week the Taliban and their al Qaeda allies released a propaganda video showing an attack they "called off because there were civilians in the area"-- a clear response to their normal brutality that isn't winning them much sympathy in the world.

Meanwhile, Taliban spokesman and my personal "pen pal" Qari Mohammad Yousif "Ahmadi" claims today that the negotiations for their release are "going well". Hopefully, this means that they will be released unharmed. Unfortunately, it may mean that ransom will be paid or that Taliban prisoners will be released--which will inevitably lead to more kidnappings.

But the best news from Ahmadi?

We hope it will be finished before 7 p.m. If not, we might give them more time."
Let's also not forget that the Taliban are also holding a German hostage and an unknown number of Afghans.

We're grateful that Michelle Malkin has taken up the cause, and she notes the underground Christian movement in Afghanistan. Interestingly enough, just yesterday I listened to an interview by Matt Sanchez of a Christian convert in Afghanistan named "Hazrat".

UPDATE: Now they want money? I've been hearing reports of this on and off, it's difficult to say with any certainty what exactly the Taliban want. But it is always safe to say, that whatever other demands are made in public, that privately they will also ask for money.

Michelle also now has a picture up of local Afghans from a village near where the Koreans were taken hostage protesting the Taliban's actions.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:55 AM | Comments |

Korean Reactions to Hostage Crisis

The Marmot's Hole is following the Korean hostage crisis closely, with updates, including a call from the Korean "White House" for bloggers to stop condemning the hostages for going to Afghanistan.

I've heard similar sentiments here, in the comments section, that the South Koreans were "stupid" for going into Afghanistan. Maybe, but no more "stupid" than St. Paul going to Jerusalem.

The hostages and their families in Korea remain in our prayers.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:22 AM | Comments |

July 23, 2007

S. Korean Hostages Will Die Soon, Taliban Says

Despite an extended deadline, negotiations for the 23 S. Korean missionaries kidnapped last week in Afghanistan are "not going well":

The Islamic militant group set an extended deadline of 12.30am today for their demands to be met, including the release of 23 Taliban prisoners and the withdrawal of South Korean troops from Afghanistan.

The hostages are mostly teachers and health care workers.

"The talks are continuing, but it seems they are not going well," Taliban spokesman Yousuf Ahmadi said, challenging more upbeat reports from the Afghan Government side.

"If they continue in this way, I think the hostages will be killed."

Ahmadi blamed the problems on a delegation representing the Afghan Government not having the authority to free the Taliban prisoners.

Continued prayers for the safety of the hostages and for their swift release.

Time is Up: Taliban to Murder Korean Christian Hostages (UPDATE: Deadline Extended)
Korean Hostages Get A Break, Taliban Spokesman Signs Own Death Warrant
Taliban Demands S. Korea Withdraw Troops from Afghanistan, Or 18 Christian Missionaries Will Be MURDERED
South Korean Christians Kidnapped in Afghanistan

By at 08:12 PM | Comments |

Time is Up: Taliban to Murder Korean Christian Hostages (UPDATE: Deadline Extended)


The deadline set by Taliban spokesman Qari "Ahmedi" Mohammad Yousuf for the murder of 23 Korean civilian hostages has passed. According to a posting at the official website of the Taliban, the deadline was extended to 7:00 p.m. local time today. As of this writing, it is 8:35 p.m. in Afghanistan/Pakistan.


UPDATE: Another 24 hours?

A purported Taliban spokesman said that negotiations for the lives of 23 South Korean hostages had stalled and that militants would kill the aid workers Tuesday evening if the government doesn't free Taliban prisoners.

Another purported Taliban spokesman, Qari Mohammad Yousuf said talks with the Afghan government were going nowhere. The deadline was extended to 14:30 GMT Tuesday, he said, quoted by Reuters.

I've personally e-mailed Qari Mohammed Yousuf asking for the release of the Korean hostages. Not that I think that my e-mail will have any effect on him. We're not exactly 'friends'.

But I'd like to remind the Taliban media spinmeisters that if these hostages are killed, in the eyes of the world it will be cold-blooded murder. The world is watching you.......

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:08 AM | Comments |

Korean Hostages Get A Break, Taliban Spokesman Signs Own Death Warrant

The good news:

KABUL, Afghanistan - A purported Taliban spokesman said Sunday that the hard-line militia had extended by 24 hours the deadline for the Afghan government to trade captured militants for 23 South Korean hostages.
The better news:
He said the delegation made progress in their talks, but the Afghan military said Afghan and U.S. troops had "surrounded" the region in case the government decides the military should move in.
I don't understand the scare quotes around the word "surrounded" but, here's the best news:
"The Korean government should put pressure on the Afghan government to give a positive response to the Taliban's demands," Ahmadi told The Associated Press by satellite phone.
Keep up the good sloppy work, dumbasses.

Excrement question: Anyone have any ideas why they'd be so bold to use a traceable satellite phone and talk to the AP rather than the usual posting on jihadi websites and using personal couriers to Al Jazeera?

UPDATE by Rusty: The worst news--the 24 hour deadline extension expires today. Pray.

On the Taliban's old website, they listed this phone number for Qari Mohammad Yousuf, aka "Ahmadi". Presumably, this is how the AP called him.

(011 from US, then) 8821621515539

Or you can e-mail him here: qarimohammadyousaf@yahoo.com

A second phone number for another Taliban spokesman, "Mujahid"

(011 from US, then) 8821621360585

Just in case you want to give Ahmadi a piece of your mind........

UPDATE II by Rusty: Time's up.......

By Vinnie at 12:00 AM | Comments |

July 21, 2007

Taliban Demands S. Korea Withdraw Troops from Afghanistan, Or 18 Christian Missionaries Will Be MURDERED

After claiming that they killed two German and 5 Afghan hostages earlier today, the Taliban said that the lives of 18 Christian missionaries hinge on South Korea pulling its 200 troops from Afghanistan (via MSNBC):

[Taliban spokesman] Ahmadi said that 18 kidnapped Koreans would also be killed Saturday if South Korea didn’t withdraw its 200 troops in Afghanistan.

South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun urged the Taliban to “send our people home quickly and safely.” He said 23 South Koreans had been abducted.

Roh also spoke with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai and asked for cooperation to quickly win the release of the South Koreans, Roh’s office said.

The S. Korean troops mainly work on reconstruction and health care projects. The captive Koreans were on a mission trip to work in a Khandahar hospital.

Joseph Park, mission director of the Christian Council of Korea, said: “They are young Korean Christians who were engaged in short-term evangelistic activity and service for children in Kandahar. We cannot turn away from poor people and children there just because of safety risks.”


South Korean Christians Kidnapped in Afghanistan

By at 12:08 PM | Comments |

July 20, 2007

South Korean Christians Kidnapped in Afghanistan

UPDATE 7/21/2007: Taliban threatens to murder 18 Christian missionaries, demands Koreans remove troops from Afghanistan.


Eighteen members of a South Korean Presbyterian church on a mission trip to Afghanistan were snatched off the church bus by the Taliban Thursday. The group of 3 men and 15 women were traveling from Kabul to Khandahar when they were attacked by 35-40 armed Taliban who drove the bus into the desert and forced the missionaries to walk for more than an hour to a nearby village.

Taliban spokesman Yousef Ahmadi said the abductees are safe for now.

"The Taliban have kidnapped the South Korean nationals," Ahmadi said from an unknown location. "There are 18 South Koreans - three men and 15 women. "They are with the Taliban now and they are safe and sound. They are under investigation and once the investigation is over, the Taliban leading council will make a final decision about their fate."

Last year about 1200 South Korean Christians were ordered out of Afghanistan because of fears for their safety. A report by the S. Korean foreign ministry detailed plans by the Taliban to kidnap travellers in the Kabul area.

It said the insurgents appeared to be trying to barter the release of one of their top leaders, arrested about a year ago.

"The reason they picked South Koreans as their target is believed to be because South Koreans often travel by land," with the least security measures, the ministry said.

The Taliban are also claiming to have kidnapped two German engineers and 6 Afghan associates, and are demanding the withdrawal of German troops from Afghanistan:

Afghan authorities searched on Thursday for two Germans and six Afghans who were abducted in an area southwest of the capital.

The group was travelling in a car when seized on Wednesday in Wardak province, the Interior Ministry said.

The identity of the group and who kidnapped them was not clear. Berlin said on Wednesday that two Germans had gone missing in Afghanistan and its embassy in Kabul and other appropriate authorities were working to find out what had happened.

One German national was kidnapped in western Afghanistan this month, but was released unharmed after few days.

These latest kidnappings follow two high-profile abductions by the Taliban earlier this year. In March Italian journalist Daniele Mastrogiacomo and his 2 Afghan colleagues, Sayed Agha and Adjmal Nakshbandi, were kidnapped with demands for the release of Taliban prisoners being held by the Afghan government. Mastrogiacomo was freed after Afghan President Hamid Karzai released 5 Taliban, 3 of whom were later killed with the infamous Mullah Dadullah. Agha was beheaded on video during the abduction, and Nakshbandi was beheaded on Easter Day.

In April French aid workers Eric Damfreville and Celine Cordelier, along with 3 Afghan colleagues, were kidnapped for more than 5 weeks before being freed safely.

Missionaries kidnapped by Taleban warned they face death

The Taleban forbid Christians from entering Afghanistan to convert Muslims, under threat of death. Yesterday Sayed Murard Shrifi, a religious cleric who is head of the public court in Baghlan, said: “In terms of punishment the one who comes to a Muslim country to convert people to their religion must face the strongest punishment. The first choice is death and the second life in prison.”

The Jawa Report's extensive hostage archives

By at 08:37 AM | Comments |