Newsman's Wife Makes Plea to Gaza Kidnappers

By Diaa Hadid
Associated Press
Thursday, August 17, 2006

GAZA CITY, Aug. 16 -- The wife of a kidnapped Fox News cameraman made a public plea Wednesday to his kidnappers to release him and a fellow journalist. Palestinian officials said they had no firm leads on where the two men are being held.

The cameraman, Olaf Wiig, 36, of New Zealand, and American reporter Steve Centanni, 60, were taken Monday from their TV van near the Palestinian security services headquarters.

Major radical groups in Gaza have denied involvement, and the kidnappers have yet to make any demands, which Palestinian officials is unusual after two days.

Wiig's wife, Anita McNaught, appealed to the kidnappers to free her husband and Centanni.

"The bottom line is, there is no good reason for these two men to be held," said McNaught, a freelance television journalist. "They are friends of the Palestinians. They are here telling the Palestinian story for weeks now, when the rest of the world's media has not been here."

In Washington, State Department spokeswoman Julie Reside said the United States was working with Palestinian officials and called for the journalists to be released immediately.

Jan Henderson, New Zealand's ambassador to Israel and Turkey, met with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Gaza to discuss the incident.

© 2006 The Washington Post Company