U.S. to Compensate Families of Killed Hostages

The United States will compensate the families of two Al-Qaeda hostages killed in an operation near the Afghan-Pakistan border.

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Ben Ariel,

Warren Weinstein
Warren Weinstein
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The White House on Thursday said the United States would compensate the families of a Jewish-American and Italian hostage killed in a counterterrorism operation near the Afghan-Pakistan border.

"Compensation will be provided to both families," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said, according to AFP, adding that the final details had yet to be agreed.

Earlier on Thursday it was revealed that Dr. Warren Weinstein, an American held by Al-Qaeda since 2011, and Giovanni Lo Porto, an Italian national who had been held hostage since 2012, were killed in an American operation in January.

President Barack Obama said he takes “full responsibility” for the incident.

"I want to express our grief and condolences for the families of two hostages," Obama said from the White House briefing room.

"Since 9/11, our counterterrorism efforts have prevented terrorism attacks and saved innocent lives, both here in America and around the world, and that determination to protect innocent life only makes the loss of these two men especially painful for all of us," he added.

In a video released by Al-Qaeda in 2012, Weinstein, a former peace corps official abducted from his home in Lahore, Pakistan, pleaded with President Obama to comply with the terrorists’ demands.

“My life is in your hands, Mr. President,” he said. “If you accept the demands, I live. If you don’t accept the demands, then I die.”

“I've done a lot of service for my country, and I would hope that my country will now look after me and take care of me and meet the demands of the mujahedeen,” he added.