By: Todd Shields
President Bush on Friday said his administration would “chase down any leads” as it sought the release of Daniel Pearl, a reporter for The Wall Street Journal who was kidnapped in Pakistan.
An e-mail message sent Thursday to news organizations said Pearl’s abductors had extended by 24 hours, to Friday, a deadline for killing him. His captors in earlier messages accused Pearl, the Journal‘s South Asian bureau chief, of working for American and Israeli intelligence services. The Journal and American officials rejected such accusations.
Pearl, 38, was abducted in Karachi on Jan. 23 as he sought an interview with a Muslim cleric.
“We’re very concerned about The Wall Street Journal reporter,” Bush told reporters. “We’re in touch with the Pakistan government. We’re in touch with the (newspaper).”