Kayla Mueller’s parents speak out against Doctors Without Borders (DWB), which refused to negotiate for their daughter’s release.
Kayla Mueller’s parents, Marsha and Carl Mueller, told ABC NewsDWB refused to negotiate for their daughter’s freedom.
Meanwhile, Kayla was tortured and raped repeatedly by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of terrorist group ISIS.
Kayla was kept hostage for a year-and-a-half in a dungeon until she was finally murdered.
Ten months into her abduction, ISIS called DWB and, in a recorded phone conversation, asked if they were willing to negotiate for Kayla’s return.
The senior official stated, “NO. So, the crisis management team that we have installed for our five people and that managed the case for our people will be closed down in the next week. Yeah? …Because our case is closed.”
Kayla’s heartbroken father was interviewed in an episode of “20/20” set to air on Friday. In it, he stated the DWB is: “a fabulous organization, and they do wonderful work but somewhere in a boardroom, they decided to leave our daughter there to be tortured and raped and ultimately murdered.”
Kayla was captured when she and her boyfriend, a member of DWB, were leaving a hospital.
When asked why DWB, also known as MSF by their French abbreviation, did nothing to negotiate her return, Jason Cone, MSF’s U.S. executive director explained it clearly.
“I don’t think there was a moral responsibility,” he coldly replied. “We can’t be in the position of negotiating for people who don’t work for us.”
He explained she had not been asked to come to Syria and had she attempted to gain permission they would have denied her based on her American citizenship.
Chris Voss, a retired FBI chief hostage negotiator thought the DWB decision was “stunning.” He stated: “I think that’s totally abandoning someone that you had no reason to abandon. I mean, it sets that person up for incredibly negative, horrific consequences.
“They could’ve said, ‘Yes, you work for us.’ And they couldn’t extended her some sort of protection, some sort of legitimacy that would’ve cost them nothing. And why they leave her out there like that? It’s frightening. It scares me. It’s a lack of appreciation for another human being.”
When Kayla’s death was reported on February 6, 2015, a Doctors Without Borders press release stated: “Despite media reports, MSF wishes to clarify that at no time was Ms. Mueller employed by MSF, either in Syria or anywhere else.”
Meanwhile, at least seven MSF members were released after negotiated ransom payments.
“If we start engaging in negotiating for the release of non-staff members, we increase the risk to our teams that are already taking grave risks to provide medical care in the [sic] some of these places that Kayla wanted to provide help to,” the Doctors Without Borders executive explained.
When the Mueller’s asked the MSF for help, they simply told the couple it was in the government’s hands.
The Mueller’s received an audio clip with Kayla reporting she was healthy and she shared the price of her ransom but a video was also released with Kayla admitting she was sick and needed help.
“I saw how thin she looked but I saw that her eyes were very clear and steady,” Marsha said. “It broke my heart but I also saw her strength.”
In the end, both the government and Doctors Without Borders failed Kayla and she was lost, among the hundreds of thousands of victims who continue to tall to the Islamic State.
The last words Kayla’s parents ever heard from her was in the form of a voice clip, which ended with the simple word, “Goodbye.”
By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)