Alan Henning: Vigil held for Islamic State hostage

Alan Henning in Syria
Image caption Alan Henning was seized in Syria in December

More than 100 people have attended a vigil in Greater Manchester in a show of support for the British hostage Alan Henning.

The Salford taxi driver was captured by Islamic State militants while delivering aid to Syria in December.

People of different faiths met at the Bolton Council of Mosques on Wednesday to call for his release.

It comes after his family revealed they received an audio recording of the 47 year old "pleading for his life".

'Top guy'

Many of his supporters at the vigil wore T-shirts saying "Free 'Gadget' Alan Henning" - a nickname given to him by his fellow convoy members for his technical skills.

Yasir Amir, 39, who travelled with Mr Henning in Syria, called him "a top guy" adding "he went there to make a difference, to help people".

Imam Rashid Musa, one of Bolton's senior Muslim clerics, said: "Being a person of faith, there is always hope, and my hope is that Alan will be released."

Canon Michael Cooke, from Bolton Council's Faith Leaders' Forum, also said prayers and led a two-minute silence.

Canon Cooke read a message from Chris Edmondson, Bishop of Bolton, in which he urged people in the "coming days and weeks" to pray together "for Alan's release, safe and unharmed" and for his family "in their anxiety and distress".

Last week, British Muslim leaders called for Mr Henning's immediate release in a letter in the Independent newspaper.

IS militants issued a threat to kill Mr Henning in a video released on 13 September which showed the killing of another British man, David Haines.

His death followed those of two US hostages, journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff.

Earlier on Tuesday IS released a second video of UK journalist John Cantlie, who was kidnapped in Syria in 2012 and is being held hostage.

Image caption More than 100 people attended the vigil in Bolton

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