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Syria Al-Qaeda affiliate says will free UN troops

Image grab taken from a video released by Al-Manara Al-Baydaa, the official media arm of Al-Nusra Front, and uploaded on YouTube on September 10, 2014 shows a Fijian UN peacekeeper. AFP IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DIGITAL ALTERATIONS TO THE PICTURESAl-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate Al-Nusra Front has said it will free 45 Fijian UN peacekeepers who it kidnapped after the capture of a border crossing with the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. Al-Nusra had originally demanded various terms for the release of the peacekeepers, including the delivery of aid to areas besieged by the Syrian government, the release of prisoners and the group’s removal from a UN terror blacklist. The peacekeepers, all Fijian nationals, were taken hostage two weeks ago when Al-Nusra fighters stormed the Syrian side of the Quneitra crossing that leads to the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. Earlier in the week, the Fijian government appeared to announce that the troops were to be released imminently in posts on social media that were subsequently removed.

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