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Wife of ISIS hostage makes televised plea to captors

LONDON -- The wife of a British aid worker held hostage in Syria by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) made a televised plea Tuesday asking her husband's captors to free him.

Alan Henning, a 47-year-old former taxi driver, was kidnapped in December after crossing from Turkey into Syria in an aid convoy. His wife Barbara Henning asked the militants: "Please release him. We need him back home."

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In recent weeks, the militants have released online videos showing the beheading of two American journalists and a British aid worker, David Haines. Henning appeared in a video released by ISIS, which showed the murder of Haines, according to Reuters. In it, a masked man said Henning would also be killed if British Prime Minister David Cameron kept supporting the fight against the militants.

Henning's captivity, and that of other Western hostages, was kept secret for months out of concerns publicity would endanger their security.

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Barbara Henning has previously released messages through Britain's Foreign Office appealing for the militants to get in touch with her family. Earlier this month she said she had received an audio file of her husband pleading for his life. She said Tuesday the family has had no other communication from the militant group.

Barbara Henning has stressed that her husband was working with Muslims to help vulnerable people in Syria.

Dozens of Muslim leaders in Britain have urged ISIS to release Alan Henning.

His wife said she had been given hope by "the outcry across the world" over Alan Henning's imprisonment.

"Surely those who wish to be seen as a state will act in a statesmanlike way by showing mercy and providing clemency," she said.

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ISIS has also released propaganda videos involving a kidnapped British journalist. In it, John Cantlie, a British journalist who was held and released by jihadists in Syria in 2012, appears to be reading a script criticizing American airstrikes.

The lines recited by Cantlie cast blame for his current circumstances at leaders in London and Washington for refusing to negotiate with the group for the release of hostages.

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