For “executed,” read “murdered in cold blood.” Just in from CNN, with thanks to Nicolei:
(CNN) — The director of CARE in Iraq, who was kidnapped last month, may have been executed, a British official with knowledge of the abduction said Tuesday.
The Foreign Office official said: “There is a video. … We believe it is probably genuine, but we cannot be certain at this time.”
Officials are in close contact with the family of Margaret Hassan and will release a statement in a few hours when they know what has actually happened to her, the office said.
It was not confirming or denying her death at this point.
In a statement issued through the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Hassan’s family said: “Our hearts are broken. We have kept hoping for as long as we could, but we now have to accept that Margaret has probably gone and at last her suffering has ended.”
Hassan, who was born in Ireland and had lived in Iraq for 30 years, was kidnapped on October 19 by a group that did not identify itself.
The group said November 2 that it would turn Hassan over to an al Qaeda-affiliated group if the British government did not pull its troops out of Iraq within 48 hours, the Arab TV network Al-Jazeera said at the time.
CARE International suspended its operations in Iraq the day after Hassan was kidnapped in Baghdad.