Skip to main content

Video: Father of John Cantlie appeals to IS to release his son

Father issues emotional appeal to IS to release hostage John Cantlie and allow him to 'return safely to those he loves and those who love him'
John Cantlie's father appeals to IS from his hospital bed (Screengrab of YouTube video issued by the Telegraph)
Paul Cantlie, the 81-year-old father of British hostage John Cantlie has issued a video message from his hospital bed appealing to Islamic State (IS) militants to release his captured son.
 
John Cantlie was abducted in November 2012, at the same time as US photographer James Foley, who was later filmed being beheaded in an IS video. 
 
In the last few weeks a series of videos have been aired by the Islamic State in which British photographer Cantlie is seen speaking directly to the camera. In his first video he confirmed that he was still being held prisoner.  
 
Paul Cantlie expressed his family's great relief at seeing John in the first recording, as they had not seen him since his kidnap in 2012.
 
While the video brought the family some instant relief, in that it finally confirmed that he was alive, their next emotion was a feeling of “despair and helplessness”, his father said in the video.  
 
In his emotional plea Paul Cantlie explained that his son had been seized in northern Syria where he had been working as an independent photo journalist seeking out the true story of the suffering of the Syrian people.
 
He said his son had tried to act as a platform, using his journalistic skills, to draw attention to the plight of the Syrian people. 
 
He said he has received many messages of support from strangers and friends.
 
He also sent a message to his son saying how proud he is of him and saying he can imagine no greater joy than seeing him alive and well. 
 
Paul said him and his family are trying to communicate with IS to deliver an important message regarding John but that they have received no response.
 
Speaking to IS directly, Paul  said of his son: “Please know that he is a good man.”
 
“I ask you from all that is sacred, to help us and allow him to return safely to those he loves and those who love him.”