Former American ‘Hostage’ Indicted for Plotting Romanian Hostage Taking

Mohamad Munaf, an American translator who was among those reported kidnapped with three Romanian March 28, has been indicted by Romanian authorities for having been a plotter in that kidnapping.

International news from swissinfo, the Swiss news platform (SwissInfo – Reuters)

Romania on Friday charged the translator for three Romanian journalists who were held in Iraq for 55 days, and an Arab businessman, of orchestrating the kidnapping. Prosecutors said the reporters’ guide, Mohamad Munaf, who was seized with the journalists on March 28, and Romanian-Syrian businessman Omar Hayssam were charged with “initiating, funding and coordinating the March 28 kidnapping.”

The general prosecutor’s office said the kidnapping was part of an elaborate plot aimed at turning Hayssam into a hero in Romania in the hope that it would help him escape potential punishment for previous charges of organized crime and economic-financial wrongdoings. “The abduction and threats by the Iraq group were aimed at triggering a strong psychological impact on the (Romanian) population, to depict Hayssam as a liberator of the journalists,” it said in a statement.

Former American ‘Hostage’ Indicted for Plotting Romanian Hostage Taking (Jawa Report)

Our Romanian affairs reporter, Adi, informs us that former hostage in Iraq and American citizen, Mohammed Monaf, has been indicted in Romania for his alleged involvement in a conspiracy to abduct three Romanian journalists in Iraq. The three Romanian victims were Marie Jeanne Ion, Sorin Dumitru Miscoci, and Edward Ovidiu Ohanesian.

Quite bizarre.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.