Following are excerpts from an interview with Doctor 'Azzam Tamimi, Director of the Institute for Islamic Political Thought, broadcast on Al-Jazeera TV (Qatar) on October 19, ?2005
The interviewer: First, what do you think of the ongoing series of kidnappings of Arab and foreign journalists in Iraq?
Doctor 'Azzam Tamimi: In the name of Allah the Merciful and the Compassionate. This is sad and painful, because the journalists carry out a very important mission. Were it not for the presence of these journalists, we would not receive information, and many scandals would not be exposed. We now know about these (scandals) thanks to the presence and sacrifices of these journalists. Especially in this case... This journalist (Rory Carroll) represents one of the newspapers which are most supportive Arab rights, and of human causes. We are saddened when any journalist is victim to such an action, but we even more saddened when this journalist is a friend, like this journalist.
We call upon whoever can help to facilitate the release of this journalist and his safe return to make all possible efforts. Today I contacted my colleagues in the Muslim Association of Britain and the leaders of the Islamic community. They are all worried, because The Guardian is especially supportive of our causes and strongly apposed the invasions of Iraq and of Afghanistan. It played a role in exposing the scandals in Abu Ghuraib and other tragedies that have befallen our brothers in Iraq. That is why we call upon whoever kidnapped him and anyone who knows anything that may lead to his release, to help in this, because this is a noble and brave man who supports our causes. He is Irish and the Irish are, by nature, supportive of the Arab issues. The Guardian, as I have said, supports Arab rights in Palestine and Iraq, and it supports the Muslims in general.
We do not know who the kidnappers are. Perhaps they think that he is a rival or an enemy, and do not know that he is a friend. This is why we appeal to them, through Al-Jazeera TV, so they will realize he is our friend and also their friend.