UNITED NATIONS - The parents of a slain American woman, who was held hostage by Islamic State terrorist group, once asked US President Barack Obama to release Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist serving an 86-year jail term in Texas,  in exchange for 26-year-old Kayla Muelled, their daughter, The Daily Beast reported Friday.  

Ms. Siddiqui is imprisoned near Fort Worth, Texas, since 2008, when she was arrested in Afghanistan for allegedly shooting at US government agents at an interrorgation centre.  The Islamic State group, which captured Ms. Mueller, offered to trade her for Ms. Siddiqui (and $6 million) in July 2014.

The move reflected the desperation of the family, and of those trying to help it, as options to win Ms. Mueller’s freedom narrowed and the terrorists threatened to kill her if the Ms. Siddiqui were not released.  

The Daily Beast claims to have obtained emails showing Mueller’s parents wrote to Obama requesting Ms. Siddiqui’s release in compliance with the militants’ offer.  “Kayla’s parents would have done anything they could for their daughter, as any parents would, and they thought it was worth exploring any and all options,” a family representative told The Daily Beast.

But government officials could not say if Obama ever read the request.

Ms. Mueller was killed after more than a year of captivity with the Islamic State group. The militants claim the 26-year-old aid worker died in Jordanian bombings, but Pentagon officials said they had “no doubt” she was ki