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Muslims Debate Who It's Okay to Slaughter as a Desperate Wife Pleads for Her Husband's Life

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"Alan is a peaceful, selfless man..."

This undated family handout photo shows British man Alan Henning, currently held hostage by Islamic State (IS) and whose life was threatened in the IS video in which they beheaded David Haines. British officials have dropped efforts to prevent the naming of hostage Alan Henning. Henning is the hostage threatened in the latest Islamic State video, which announced the beheading of hostage David Haines. In the video, Henning is shown briefly on camera and also threatened with death. British officials and Henning’s family had asked the press not to publish his name out of concern for his safety, but that request was dropped Sunday afternoon. Britain's prime minister says Islamic State terrorists pose a "massive" security threat that cannot be ignored. David Cameron says the extremists who beheaded two American journalists and now a British aid worker "are not Muslims, they are monsters." (AP Photo/PA Wire) UNITED KINGDOM OUT - NO SALES - NO ARCHIVES \n

She's making a heartbreaking plea for the life of the man she loves — and getting stony silence in response.

This undated family handout photo shows British man Alan Henning, currently held hostage by Islamic State (IS) and whose life was threatened in the IS video in which they beheaded David Haines. British officials have dropped efforts to prevent the naming of hostage Alan Henning. Henning is the hostage threatened in the latest Islamic State video, which announced the beheading of hostage David Haines. In the video, Henning is shown briefly on camera and also threatened with death. British officials and Henning’s family had asked the press not to publish his name out of concern for his safety, but that request was dropped Sunday afternoon. Britain's prime minister says Islamic State terrorists pose a "massive" security threat that cannot be ignored. David Cameron says the extremists who beheaded two American journalists and now a British aid worker "are not Muslims, they are monsters." (AP Photo/PA Wire)

As the Associated Press reported:

The wife of a British aid worker held hostage by the Islamic State group has issued a statement pleading for the militants to release him and respond to her messages "before it is too late."

The Islamic State group, which has released online videos showing the beheading of two American journalists and another British aid worker, has threatened to kill former taxi driver Alan Henning next.

Henning, 47, was kidnapped in December in Syria, shortly after crossing into the country from Turkey in an aid convoy.

His wife, Barbara, implored the militants to "see it in their hearts" to release him late Saturday.

"Alan is a peaceful, selfless man who left his family and his job as a taxi driver in the U.K. to drive in a convoy all the way to Syria with his Muslim colleagues and friends to help those most in need," she wrote in a statement released by Britain's Foreign Office.

"His purpose for being there was no more and no less. This was an act of sheer compassion," she said.

The aid worker was driving an ambulance loaded with food and water at the time of the kidnapping, Barbara Henning said. She added that the militants have not responded to her repeated attempts to make contact.

The Islamic State may not be speaking to Barbara Henning, but other Muslims have spoken out against the jihadist group's plan to behead the aid worker.

As USA Today reported:

Earlier Saturday, jihadi ideologue Abu Mohammed al-Maqdisi, who was released by Jordan in June after serving a five-year sentence on terror charges, urged the Islamic State group to release Henning, saying Islam forbids harming non-Muslims who work with relief agencies.

"Is it reasonable that his reward is being kidnapped and slaughtered?" asked Al-Maqdisi, also known as Essam al-Barqawi. "He should be rewarded with thanks."

"We call on the (Islamic) State to release this man (Alan Henning) and other aid group employees who enter the land of Muslims with a guarantee of protection... according to the judgment of Shariah law," Al-Maqdisi said, adding that he hoped to "protect the image of Islamic Shariah law from being disfigured."

A group of British Muslims have condemned Alan Henning's capture by the Islamic State on similar grounds, arguing that killing an aid worker is un-Islamic.

“In Islam, concern for fellow humans and the duty to help everyone is a religious obligation,” they wrote in a statement published by the Independent. “Anyone undertaking a humanitarian act is paving his or her way to receive help from heaven."

Muslims might be specifically condemning the slaughter of an aid worker as un-Islamic, but the troubling thought remains that, as British Muslim Anjam Choudary argued last month, journalists and other non-Muslim non-combatants could be fair game for capture and beheading.

Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter

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