Islamic cleric testifies he wanted to aid hostages

AP News
Posted: May 12, 2014 1:50 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A former London imam has told a New York jury he tried to help hostages in Yemen in 1998 by urging their captors to let them telephone embassies and their families.

Mustafa Kamel Mustafa (muh-STAH'-fuh kah-MEHL' muh-STAH'-fuh) testified for a third day Monday in Manhattan federal court. He has pleaded not guilty to charges that he conspired to support terrorism by helping the hostage takers and by later trying to create a training camp in Oregon.

Mustafa has said he supplied a satellite phone to the men but was angry when he learned they had taken people hostage.

He said he urged the captors to let the hostages speak to their embassies and families so the Yemen government would not overreact and cause deaths. Four hostages died.