A senior Italian politician says he believes a ransom of $1m or more was paid for the release of two female Italian aid workers kidnapped in Iraq.
Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini has said no money was paid. [Let's see how many more Italian hostages get taken.]
But Gustavo Selva, head of the Italian parliament's foreign affairs committee, said the denial was purely "official".
Meanwhile, British hostage Ken Bigley has appeared in a new video aired by Arabic TV channel Al-Jazeera, accusing Tony Blair of ignoring his plight.
Squatting down in a cage and dressed in an orange jumpsuit, Mr Bigley said his captors did not want to kill him, and he accused the UK prime minister of "lying".
Blair to the rescue:
...He doesn't care about me. I'm just one person," Mr Bigley said.
Leader of the House of Commons Peter Hain told BBC News Interactive he could "not imagine the horror" that Ken Bigley and his family were experiencing.
However, he said "it was not possible to accede to the demands of hostage-takers because that will encourage them to keep doing it to other British citizens". [As if they can stop them from taking more regardless.]
Blair says the war was justified, so he has to keep justifying it over and over because no one seems to believe him. In this case repeating a lie long enough doesn't make it so.
The biggest whopper in an interview with the BBCwas this one, worthy of Rumsfeld:
"The action in Iraq had led to Libya winding up its weapons programme, and meant there was a "better chance of getting Iran and North Korea into compliance than we have ever had", he said."
Yeah sure, that'll be happening. You can see North Korea is just shaking in their boots. Iran is buckling. And Moammar promises not to plot any more assignation attempts after he kills Crown Prince Abdullah.]