The boyfriend of US hostage Kayla Mueller has told of how he made an effort to free her while she was being held in Syria by Isis.
Mueller, 26, was taken in August 2013 after driving into the northern Syria city of Aleppo with boyfriend Omar Alkhani, after leaving a Doctors Without Borders hospital where he had been working.
Her colleagues received subsequently received a proof-of-life video, showing her wearing a hijab and begging for her life.
Mueller was kept as a hostage by Isis militants, while Alkhani was released a couple of months later after being beaten and interrogated about his work as a photographer, his religion and his relationship to Mueller, he said. Alkhani said he returned to Syria from Turkey to try and get her back, where he posed as her husband in the hope that the Isis militants would free her. However, Mueller reportedly denied that she was his wife.
"Since she's American, they would not let her go anyway. No sense to stay here, both of us," Alkhani said. "Maybe she wanted to save me. Maybe she didn't know I came back to save her."
In pictures: Anti-Isis protests in Jordan
In pictures: Anti-Isis protests in Jordan
1/15 Amman, Jordan
Members of Jordan's Al Assaf tribe burn a ''Wanted Dead'' poster of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi at a rally
2/15 Amman, Jordan
Jordanian protesters carry an effigy of leader of the militant Islamic State Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, during a march after Friday prayers in downtown Amman
3/15 Amman, Jordan
Jordanian Queen Rania (C) holds a placard during a demonstration to express solidarity with the pilot murdered by the Islamic State
4/15 Amman, Jordan
A protester dressed in a Jordanian flag joins others as they hold up pictures of Jordanian King Abdullah and Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasaesbeh, while chanting slogans during a march against Islamic State
5/15 Amman, Jordan
Jordanians hold banners shouting slogans during a demonstration to express their solidarity with the pilot murdered by the Islamic State
6/15 Amman, Jordan
Jordanians carry banners and pictures of executed Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kassasbeh while shouting slogans against the group calling themselves the Islamic State, during a march after noon pray in downtown Amman
7/15 Amman, Jordan
Protesters hold up pictures of Jordan's King Abdullah and pilot Muath al-Kasaesbeh as they chant slogans during a rally in Amman to show their loyalty to the King and against the Islamic State
8/15 Amman, Jordan
Jordanians chant slogans to show their support for the government against terror during a rally
9/15 Amman, Jordan
Jawdat al-Kaseasbeh, a brother of slain Jordanians pilot Muath al-Kaseasbeh, reacts to people gathering to show their support for the government against terror during a rally
10/15 Amman, Jordan
A Jordanian protester kisses a poster bearing the image of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasaesbeh during a rally to show their loyalty to King Abdullah and against the Islamic State
11/15 Amman, Jordan
A Jordanian shouts slogans during a rally against the Islamic state group and in reaction to the burning alive of Jordanian pilot Maaz al-Kassasbeh by the group's militants
12/15 Amman, Jordan
Jordanians carry pictures of pilot Maaz al-Kassasbeh at a protest against Islamic State
13/15 Amman, Jordan
Supporters and family members of Jordanian pilot Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh express their anger at his murder at the tribal gathering chamber in Amman, Jordan
14/15 Aye Village, Karak, Jordan
The King of Jordan, Abdullah II (L), embracing Safi al-Kassasbeh (R), the father of the recently executed Jordanian pilot
15/15 Aye Village, Karak, Jordan
Jordan's Queen Rania offers her condolences to the family of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasaesbeh, at their family home of Muath
REUTERS/Petra News Agency
The guards had told Mueller that Alkhani would not be harmed if she told the truth. He suggested that she chose honesty to save him rather than take a chance to save herself.
Alkhani said he had persuaded a string of people to let him plead for her release, but left the room empty-handed. He said he saw Mueller’s face for just a few seconds when guards uncovered it to prove it was her.
A spokesperson for Mueller's family said they didn't have any reason not to trust Alkhani's account.
"They know that he deeply cared for her, and when he went back to try and rescue her by posing as her boyfriend, they knew he was taking extreme risks to do that," the spokesperson said.
A week after Isis militants claimed that the aid worker had died in a Jordanian airstrike, Mueller’s family, who live in Prescott, Arizona, confirmed she had lost her life.
The Pentagon has said it does not know how she died, but said it is certain it was not during the airstrike.
The US government and Mueller's family confirmed her death on 10 February 2015.
Additional reporting by APReuse content