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Last Updated: Monday, 30 April 2007, 09:12 GMT 10:12 UK
Protest in Thailand for BBC man
Alan Johnston
Alan Johnston has been held captive for seven weeks
Foreign journalists based in Thailand are to gather in the capital, Bangkok, for an event in support of kidnapped BBC correspondent Alan Johnston.

Mr Johnston was seized at gun point in Gaza City seven weeks ago. There has been no direct information on his fate.

Vigils are held by his colleagues and friends in London every Monday to keep his disappearance in the public eye.

Later this week, similar events are expected to take place in two other Asian capitals, Beijing and Jakarta.

Rallies and protests

Since Mr Johnston's abduction there have been widespread protests in the UK, in Israel and in the West Bank and Gaza.

Journalists from Gaza, the Middle East and a range of other countries have backed calls from the BBC and other UK media for his release.

THE EDITORS' BLOG
Editors' blog
A big part of our effort has been to keep the issue in the public eye
Jonathan Baker,
deputy head, BBC Newsgathering

Last week journalists held a rally at the Erez checkpoint, the main crossing point between Israel and the Gaza Strip, to highlight Mr Johnston's plight.

There Jonathan Baker, the BBC's deputy head of newsgathering, made a direct plea to those holding Mr Johnston to release him immediately.

Mr Johnston joined the BBC World Service in 1991 and has spent eight of the last 16 years as a correspondent, including periods in Uzbekistan and Afghanistan.

He has lived and worked in Gaza for three years and was the only Western reporter permanently based in the often violent and lawless territory.

Earlier this month, a previously unknown militant group said it had killed the correspondent, but the BBC and Palestinian officials said they were unable to verify the claim.

Last week Palestinian Deputy Prime Minister Azzam al-Ahmad said his office had information that "indicates that Johnston is in good health".

A BBC News website petition has now registered more than 60,000 names in support of Mr Johnston.




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