Moslem kidnappers holding three Americans and one Indian released a photograph of two of the U.S. hostages and listed conditions under which all their captives might be freed.
The Islamic Jihad for the Liberation of Palestine issued the handwritten statement and the photograph late Thursday to a Western news agency in Beirut.The two American educators pictured - 49-year-old Alann Steen of Boston and Jesse Jonathan Turner, 41, a native of Boise, Idaho - have been held for nearly 20 months.
The statement, written in Arabic, hinted that the Moslem group would free its hostages if the U.S. administration undertook an initiative within one week in support of the Palestinian uprising in Israeli-occupied territories. The unrest began Dec. 8.
Official U.S. policy is that Washington will not bargain under such conditions.
The picture showed Steen and Turner, smiling broadly, resting on a mattress with a flowered pattern and a violet pillow. Each was holding a cigarette. Both wore navy blue outfits and had long hair. Steen was clean-shaven, and Turner had a bushy beard.
Steen; Turner; Robert Polhill, 54, originally of New York City, and Mithileshwar Singh, 60, an Indian who is a legal resident alien of the United States, were kidnapped on Jan. 24, 1987, from the campus of the U.S.- affiliated Beirut University by gunmen posing as riot police.
The Islamic Jihad group is believed to be sympathetic to the Palestinians as well as Iran's revolutionary patriarch Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.
The four educators are among 17 foreigners missing and believed held hostage in Lebanon. The 17 include nine Americans, three Britons, an Indian, an Irishman, an Italian and two unidentified men.