Two Italian aid workers, Photo by AP

Hostages’ views: “Guerrilla warfare is legitimate, but I am against the kidnapping of civilians,” Simona Torretta, who speaks Arabic and was already based in Iraq before Saddam Hussain was ousted, told Italian daily Corriere della Sera.

“You have to distinguish between terrorism and resistance – I said it before and I repeat it today,” she added.

Ms Torretta went on to describe Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi’s administration as “a puppet government in the hands of the Americans”. (From: Italy split over hostages’ views, BBC Online, Photo: AP)