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Hostage's wife makes new plea to IS

The wife of a British hostage has issued a renewed plea for Islamic State to release her husband.

Alan Henning, a former taxi driver from Salford, was kidnapped last December in Syria by IS militants.

His wife, Barbara Henning, said: "I ask Islamic State please release him, we need him back home."

She added: " Some say wrong time, wrong place. Alan was volunteering with his Muslim friends to help the people of Syria. He was in the right place doing the right thing."

The 47-year-old aid worker was shown at the end of a video released earlier this month after the beheading of fellow British captive David Haines.

Last week Mrs Henning revealed she had received an audio message of her husband pleading for his life, and had been told that a Sharia court had found him innocent of being a spy.

In her latest statement, she told BBC News: ''I have a further message for Islamic State: We've not abandoned Alan and we continue in our attempts to communicate with you.

''I have had no contact from Islamic State holding Alan other than an audio file of him pleading for his life."

She went on: 'We are at a loss why those leading Islamic State cannot open their hearts and minds to the truth about Alan's humanitarian motives for going to Syria and why they continue to ignore the verdicts of their own justice system.

''Surely those who wish to be seen as a state will act in a statesmanlike way by showing mercy and providing clemency. I ask again, supported by the voices across the world, for Islamic State to spare Alan's life.

''Alan, we miss you and we're dreadfully concerned for your safety. But we are given so much hope by the outcry across the world as to your imprisonment. I ask Islamic State: Please release him. We need him back home."

Islamic extremists last night released a third propaganda video appearing to feature photojournalist John Cantlie, who is another British hostage.

The clip, which lasts for five-and-a-half-minutes, shows Mr Cantlie sitting at a desk dressed in the now-familiar orange outfit worn by other IS hostages.

The video is introduced with the title Lend Me Your Ears and Messages From The British Detainee John Cantlie before the Briton appears on screen.

Mr Cantlie looks calm and appears to be reciting a prepared script.

He describes himself as a ''long-term prisoner'' and goes on to criticise US president Barack Obama's strategy of attempting to defeat IS fighters using air strikes.

Mr Cantlie concludes the video by saying: ''Join me again for the next programme.''

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