UK PM Cameron Criticizes NATO Leaders for Ransom Payments to Islamic State

UK PM Cameron Criticizes NATO Leaders for Ransom Payments to Islamic State

On September 4, speaking at the NATO Summit in Wales, UK Prime Minister David Cameron lectured fellow NATO leaders against making ransom payments to the Islamic State (IS) militants. 

According to The Guardian, Cameron used a G8 statement opposing ransom payments as his starting point, then began criticizing those who have breached the statement by paying ransoms. He spoke in general terms, without naming names:

What matters is not your signature on a declaration, but not letting money be paid to terrorist kidnappers because that money goes into arms, it goes into weapons, it goes into terror plots, [and] it goes into more kidnaps.

It is utterly self defeating. It is worse than self defeating, [and] it is actually a risk to us at home. 

The conference in Wales is “dedicated to building a resolute international alliance against terrorism in the Middle East.” It is against that backdrop that Cameron made his statements. He said he knows some leaders will find his words “difficult to hear,” but he was “absolutely convinced that the policy of not paying ransoms to terrorists for kidnaps is right.”

On the same day on which Cameron made these comments, BBC News reported IS militants “kidnapped 40 men from a town in northern Iraq.” 

The men were allegedly kidnapped in Hawija, located in the northern province of Kirkuk. Witnesses say they saw IS militants “dragging [the men] into cars … before driving off.”

The militants allegedly left an IS flag behind, and residents there claimed to have burned it. 

On August 13, Breitbart News reported that IS militants abducted over 500 Yazidi girls and women as “war booty” after capturing Shingal. Rudaw reported the militants loaded girls and women into trucks and drove them away.

Older women were shot and killed “on the spot in the street.”

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