Deadline Lapses, Japan Hostages' Fate Unknown
Military officials in Japan say they still haven't heard anything from Islamic State jihadists as the deadline to ransom two Japanese hostages lapsed on Friday.
ISIS threatened to behead Kenji Goto Jogo and Haruna Yukawa unless they received a $200 million ransom. The Japanese government estimates that the ultimatum expired at 2:50 p.m., CNN reports.
Either way, the Japanese government says it will not pay up.
Meanwhile in Tokyo, a former hostage who was taken in Afghanistan in 2010 by Muslim extremists and later freed, offered to negotiate with ISIS to secure the current hostages' release. But he said the Japanese government is not supporting his efforts.
Likewise, a Japanese college professor of Muslim studies also offered to negotiate with ISIS. The Japanese government reportedly rejected his offer, too.