Talks between Libyan kidnappers of two cameramen and officials mediating their release have come to a stand-still, according to Reuters.
The two cameramen, Abdelqadir Fassouk and Yusuf Badi, were kidnapped last Saturday by armed men while travelling to Misrata from Mizdah. The deadline for their release had been set for 1 pm on Thursday. According to local media, the captors are demanding the release of fighters detained in Bani Walid in exchange for their two hostages.
“The Bani Walid group is steadfast in not releasing the two journalists,” said Idris Al-Mismari, the man responsible for negotiating with the captors, according to Reuters.
“We are calling on international bodies to intervene to seek the release of these two innocent journalists,” Mismari said.
It is currently unknown what the reaction will be by the Bani Walid militia, now that the deadline expired and no statement has been released. The government on Wednesday threatened to intervene with force if the two cameramen are not released.
The two men were covering the elections in Bani Walid, one of the final bastions of support for the former Muammar Gaddafi regime.
Since the fall of Gaddafi, the interim government has had limited success in convincing fighters to peacefully disarm.