Wife of British hostage pleads with ISIS for his release

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The wife of British hostage Alan Henning is pleading with ISIS to release him, describing her husband as a “peaceful, selfless man.”

“I cannot see how it could assist any state’s cause to allow the world to see a man like Alan dying,” Barbara Henning said in a statement released by the UK Foreign Office.

Alan Henning, a former taxi driver near Manchester, England, was working in Syria in December when he was kidnapped after crossing the border from Turkey in an aid convoy.

ISIS, also known as the Islamic State, has released videos online showing the beheading of American journalists James Foley and Stephen Sotloff, another British aid worker David Haines, and has threatened to kill Henning.

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READ MORE: Jihadi ideologue urges Islamic State to release British hostage

“Alan is a peaceful, selfless man who left his family and his job as a taxi driver in the U.K. to drive in a convoy all the way to Syria with his Muslim colleagues and friends to help those most in need,” she wrote. “His purpose for being there was no more and no less. This was an act of sheer compassion.”

She added that her husband was driving an ambulance carrying food and water when he was kidnapped.

This is the first time Henning’s family has made a public statement since the release of an ISIS video earlier this month that showed the execution of Haines.

Videos of the brutal executions have led to airstrikes against the extremist group, which controls areas in Iraq and Syria.

U.S. President Barack Obama will personally lead a meeting of the UN Security Council on Sept. 24 focused on the threat of ISIS and foreign terrorist fighters.

The emotional statement from the Henning family follows a series of pleas from high-profile Muslim leaders calling for the aid worker’s release.

On Saturday, renowned Jihadi spiritual leader Muhammed al-Maqdisi posted a statement online saying: ““Is it reasonable that his reward is being kidnapped and slaughtered? … He should be rewarded with thanks.”

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Al-Maqdisi also condemned the extremist group for attacking fellow Muslims in the Middle East.