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Kidnapping - can it ever be justified?

James Harrod | 13:25 UK time, Friday, 6 July 2007

Kidnapping has been a topic at the forefront of many people's minds this week .... the release of Alan Johnston, the Niger Delta child kidnap, and the massive Columbia protests, demanding the release of hostages there.

Arguably, the world is only aware of the poverty of the Niger Delta because of the campaign of kidnappings, and media coverage of Alan will have raised many people's awareness of events in Gaza.

So can some kidnappings be justified if they highlight injustice or legitimate grievances?...

...Are they sometimes justified for the purposes of prisoner exchanges (eg Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit) but not for financial gain? And is there a clear distinction between the kidnap of innocent civilians and the CIA depriving terror suspects and political opponents of their liberty?

We'll be discussing this on the show later - do leave us a comment with your views and we'll try and get you on the programme.

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