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The Jewish Press of Tampa and the Jewish Press of Pinellas County are Independently- owned biweekly Jewish community newspapers published in cooperation with and supported by the Tampa JCC & Federation and the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco Counties, respectively. Copyright © 2009-2018 The Jewish Press Group of Tampa Bay, Inc., All Rights Reserved.


 

September 12, 2014  RSS feed
World News

Text: T T T

Rebels sold Sotloff to ISIS, family spokesman says


University of Central Florida student Melissa Catalanotto, left, president of the UCF Society of Professional Journalists, attends a candle light vigil held for journalist Stephen Sotloff on Sept. 3 at UCF, where he attended. 
Photo by Gerardo Mora/Getty Images University of Central Florida student Melissa Catalanotto, left, president of the UCF Society of Professional Journalists, attends a candle light vigil held for journalist Stephen Sotloff on Sept. 3 at UCF, where he attended. Photo by Gerardo Mora/Getty Images (JTA) – Jewish-American journalist Steven Sotloff was kidnapped by a socalled moderate rebel faction and then immediately sold to ISIS, according to a spokesman for the family.

Barak Barfi in an interview Sept 8. with CNN’s Anderson Cooper said the jihadist group Islamist State, or ISIS, paid between $25,000 and $50,000 for Sotloff after the rebels set up a fake checkpoint at the border. He said his information came from what he called “sources on the ground” in Syria.

Barfi, who said he spoke by phone with Sotloff immediately after Sotloff crossed over from Turkey to Syria, called Sotloff and slain American journalist James Foley “pawns” of the U.S. intelligence community and the White House.

Both Foley and Sotloff, who also had Israeli citizenship, were shown being beheaded by a British assassin in videos released by ISIS as a “warning” to the United States to halt airstrikes against the group in Iraq.

Barfi told Cooper that the families were not kept regularly informed by the government and that the hostages were stationary for several months, despite U.S. assertions that the hostages were moved frequently.

“The administration could have done more, they could have helped us, they could have seen them through,” Barfi said.

Barfi also challenged the leader of the ISIS jihadist group to debate the peaceful teachings of the Koran. A researcher in Arab and Islamic Affairs at a Washington think tank, Barfi is fluent in Arabic and offered a personal message to ISIS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.


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