Humanitarian Terry Waite has led calls from the international community for West Ham United to release Dimitri Payet, who is currently being held against his will.
The former hostage has paid an emotional tribute to Payet, whose situation has become increasingly desperate, pleading with West Ham to cease their inhumane treatment of the French playmaker.
“To think of this poor man being made to play the sport he loves in front of tens of thousands of adoring fans and being given just £125,000 per week brings tears to my eyes,” Waite, who was held captive in Lebanon between 1987 and 1991, told FourFourTwo.
“I remember when I was being tortured by sympathisers of Hezbollah in a windowless cell, doubting I’d ever see the light of day again, I kept thinking ‘at least I’m not the standout creative talent in a team that aren’t quite capable of breaking into the top half of the Premier League table’.
“While my 1,763 days of captivity may have seemed bleak to me, I’ve never known the agony of wondering when my next European fixture may come and knowing it’s more or less out of my control unless we shore up the defence.”
Teach him a lesson
Payet does have solid case in law if he tries to take West Ham to the European Court of Human Rights, as Common Article 3 of the Geneva Convention forbids taking hostages at any time and in any place, with Clause d) even stressing that seeking to escape mid-table mediocrity isn’t justifiable cause.
West Ham’s leader Slaven Bilic has insisted that he’s willing to let Payet walk free, but only when his demands are met.
“[To secure Payet’s release] We want £50 million to be left outside my office, or failing that £40 million and a precocious midfield talent,” a statement from Bilic to FourFourTwo reads.
“Until then I fully intend to force Dimitri to sit on a cushioned seat and to do literally nothing for his £125,000 per week. I know that sounds cruel, but it’s the only way he’ll learn.”
Please note: This story obviously isn't real. Like, come on.
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