Jordan said Wednesday it is willing to swap an Iraqi woman held on death row in Jordan for a Jordanian pilot captured in December by extremists from the Islamic State group.
The statement by Jordanian government spokesman Mohammed al-Momani made no mention of Japanese journalist Kenji Goto, who is also being held by the Islamic State group.
Efforts to release the Jordanian pilot and the journalist gained urgency with the release late Tuesday of a purported online ultimatum claiming the Islamic State group would kill both hostages within 24 hours if the Iraqi woman was not freed.
On Wednesday, al-Momani said in a statement that “Jordan is ready to release the Iraqi prisoner, Sajida al-Rishawi, if the Jordanian pilot, Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh, is released unharmed.” His comments were carried by Jordan’s official Petra news agency.
Al-Rishawi was sentenced to death in Jordan for her involvement in a 2005 terrorist attack by al-Qaida on hotels in Amman that killed 60 people.