Afghan Police Find Body of Second South Korean Hostage
ICC Note: Tragic news as Shim Sung-min, a 29-year-old man preparing for graduate school, is found dead on a roadside in Afghanistan .
7/31/07 Afghanistan (FoxNews.com/AP) Police discovered the body of a second South Korean hostage slain by the Taliban in central Afghanistan while the group threatened Tuesday to kill more hostages if their demands were not met by Wednesday, the latest of several deadlines.
South Korea , meanwhile, pleaded with the international community to set aside the normal practice of refusing to cave into hostage-takers’ demands, as it urged a peaceful resolution to a standoff. Twenty-one South Koreans remain captive.
The comments came after Afghan officials found the body of Shim Sung-min, 29, a former information technology worker who was volunteering with the South Korean church group on an aid mission to Afghanistan .
He was killed Monday after two deadlines given by the Taliban demanding the release of insurgent prisoners passed with no action. Last week the church group’s leader, Pastor Bae Hyung-kyu, was fatally shot in unclear circumstances.
A purported Taliban spokesman, Qari Yousef Ahmadi, said senior Taliban leaders decided to kill Shim because the government had not met Taliban demands to trade prisoners for the Christian volunteers, who were in their 13th day of captivity Tuesday.
“The Kabul and Korean governments are lying and cheating. They did not meet their promise of releasing Taliban prisoners,” Ahmadi, who claims to speak for the Taliban, said by phone from an undisclosed location.
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 the 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.”
Shim, who had recently left his job to prepare for graduate school, had previously visited the Philippines for five days as a volunteer worker and also had served as an army officer.
His father, Shim Jin-pyo, told reporters earlier Tuesday that he wondered how the Taliban “could perpetrate this horrible thing.”
“I think they act like they are not human beings,” he said.
The Al-Jazeera television network, meanwhile, showed shaky footage of what it said were several South Korean hostages. It did not say how it obtained the video. The authenticity of the video could not immediately be verified [Go To Full Story]