NEWS | Kaley Payne
Saturday 6 February 2016 UPDATE Sunday 7 February 2016
Islamic militants have carried out their promise to release Australian missionary Jocelyn Elliot, the wife of Dr Ken Elliot who both were kidnapped in northern Burkina Faso on January 15. News of the release came from neighbouring Niger’s President Mahamadou Issoufou, according to a Reuters report.
When news of the promise came through, the couple’s family told Perth News yesterday that they regard the news, in an audio statement from al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb as “an answer to people’s prayers all over the world.”
“We want to thank everyone for their prayers and ask that they keep praying. Please continue to do exactly that,” a spokesperson for the family, based in Western Australia, said.
The al-Qaeda group said in the audio statement that the primary motive behind the kidnapping of the Elliots was to gain “release of our captives who sit behind bars and suffer the pain of imprisonment, as well as being deprived of their basic rights.” However, the group said they had decided to release Jocelyn Elliot unconditionally as a result of public pressure and after guidance from other al-Qaeda leaders that women should not be involved in war.
There is no news yet on the group’s plans for Dr Ken Elliot..