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Jordan Says Ready To Release IS Militant If Pilot Released

A spokesman for Jordan's government said on January 28 that his country was ready to hand over a female Iraqi would-be-suicide bomber if a Jordanian pilot captured by Islamic State (IS) militants was released.

Spokesman Muhammad al-Momani was quoted on state television as saying, "Jordan is ready to release prisoner Sajida al-Rishawi if the Jordanian pilot Lieutenant Muath al-Kasasbeh was released and his life spared."

He did not make any reference to Japanese hostage Kenji Goto.

A recording posted on the Internet on January 27 said Goto would be killed unless Jordan frees would-be suicide bomber Rishawi from death row.

It said Kasasbeh has a shorter time to live than Goto. The Japanese government said it believed the IS deadline would expire around 2:00 p.m. UTC.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has condemned the recording as "despicable."

Last week, Islamic State militants claimed to have beheaded another Japanese hostage and said Goto would be killed next if Rishawi was not freed.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP