Journalist's father urges her release
Carroll tells captors in Iraq reporter 'is not your enemy'
Jim Carroll called for his daughter's release: "Jill started to tell your story, so please, let her finish it."
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(CNN) -- The father of Jill Carroll, the American journalist abducted in Iraq, called on his daughter's captors to release her Sunday night, telling them, "She is not your enemy."
"Jill started to tell your story, so please, let her finish it," Jim Carroll said in a statement he read on CNN. "Through the media, if necessary, advise her family and me of how we might initiate a dialogue that will lead to her release."
Carroll was taken hostage January 7 by militants who had threatened to kill her unless U.S. troops freed all Iraqi women prisoners in their custody. Tuesday, her captors issued a 72-hour deadline to comply with their demands, and there has been no word of her fate since then.
Her father said Sunday night that his daughter, a 28-year-old freelance reporter for the Christian Science Monitor, is "honest, sincere and of good heart" and has great respect for the Iraqi people.
"When you release her alive, she will tell your story with that same conviction," Jim Carroll said.
Jill Carroll's mother, Mary Beth Carroll, issued a similar appeal last week, citing her daughter's "genuine concern for the Iraqi people" during the nearly three-year-old war.
A group calling itself the "Brigades of Vengeance" has claimed responsibility for her kidnapping, but her captors have not been heard from since their demands were issued Tuesday. In previous Iraqi abductions, deadlines have often been fluid, with insurgents sometimes extending them.
A delegation of U.S. Muslim leaders went to Iraq on Friday in hopes of negotiating Carroll's release.
"We are the only people who have come from outside of Iraq to call for Jill's release, and we are very hopeful they will hear our message on behalf of American Muslims," said Nihad Awad, the Council on American-Islamic Relation's executive director, on Saturday.
"Harming her will do no good at all. The only way is to release her," he said. (Watch what groups are saying and doing to convince the kidnappers -- 1:01)
The American Muslim group undertook the journey to ensure the kidnappers would have every opportunity to hear their message, said Ibrahim Hooper, CAIR's communications director.
The powerful Sunni politician whom Carroll went to interview on the day she was kidnapped has also called for her to be released unharmed.
"She is a woman who strived for Iraq, defending Iraq and Iraqis, condemning war on Iraq," Sunni politician Adnan al-Dulaimi told reporters Friday. "She is here to cover Iraq's news and bring it out to the world." (Full story)
Carroll has worked in Iraq since October 2003, working for the Monitor, The Boston Globe, The San Francisco Chronicle and the Italian news agency ANSA.
The Monitor said Carroll, her driver and her interpreter went to al-Dulaimi's office for a supposed interview. But al-Dulaimi was not there, and as the three attempted to drive off, their red Toyota Cressida was ambushed. Carroll's interpreter was killed in the attack.
Jim Carroll said he was "very encouraged" by the support expressed for his daughter and his family's plight.
"We're getting by," he said. "It is very difficult, as you might imagine. But, again, the amount of support from family, friends, and total strangers around the world sending us messages of support and all of their prayers has been very encouraging."
Carroll is the 35th journalist to be kidnapped in Iraq since the beginning of the war, according to the Paris-based Reporters Without Borders. The Committee to Protect Journalists put the number at 36 and said six have been killed.
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