Kidnapped student's family remain positive 07 March 2006
Hope remains high, but frustration is constant as
the family of New Zealand hostage Harmeet Singh Sooden marks
100 days since the Auckland student was kidnapped in
Mr Sooden's brother-in-law, Mark Brewer,
said today the family continued to be optimistic he would be
released, but there had been little news since they received
video footage of him in late January.
"Effectively there's been no word, no
movement and even the rumours have slowed down, so it's a very
frustrating time," Mr Brewer told National Radio.
Mr Sooden, a Canadian citizen who lived
and studied in New Zealand, was captured along with three
others from a Christian peace organisation in November last
Vigils were held in Britain and Canada
yesterday to mark the 100th day of captivity for Mr Sooden,
Canadian James Loney, American Tom Fox and Norman Kember of
Mr Brewer said efforts to free Mr Sooden,
32, had continued unabated since the first day of his capture.
"We've had Canadian and New Zealand
officials talking to us from time to time, although admittedly
that's slowed down in the last two or three weeks.
"From our perspective, we just want to
keep the momentum on to make sure they do keep trying to
contact and get this thing resolved."
Mr Brewer's wife, Mr Sooden's sister
Preety, said yesterday it was difficult to believe 100 days
had passed since he was kidnapped in Iraq.
"It's amazing it's been so long already,
I just can't believe it."
She said the family had heard "absolutely
nothing" of Mr Sooden since they received video footage of him
in late January.
"We're just waiting and hoping."
Mr Brewer said the family was going
through a traumatic time, but was trying to remain positive.
"Hope remains high, but the overriding
feeling is frustration. We just want to bring this thing to an
end, to get Harmeet home."
He said the vigils held yesterday had
given the family "a lot of strength and hope".
"But what people don't realise is that
for the family, every day is a vigil. Every day we wake up and
talk about him and think how we're going to get this thing
resolved. It just keeps going."
Mr Sooden's captors have said they will
kill the four men if all Iraqi detainees are not released from
prisons. Muslim clerics and political leaders from around the
world have called on the kidnappers to release the men
The four men, volunteers for Christian
Peacemaker Teams, were in Iraq attempting to document human
rights abuses in the wake of the US-led war in Iraq.
»SUBSCRIBE TO FREE HEADLINES
»SUBSCRIBE TO ARCHIVESTUFF