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Sotoan Hostage Crisis

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The Sotoan Hostage Crisis was a hostage crisis that occurred on June 2, 2015 when six terrorists from the organization Capitalism Retaliation seized the Wielvakian Embassy in the Sotoan capital, taking 35 hostages and holding them for ransom. A standoff developed between the Sotoan terrorists and Wielvakian Air Force Black Ops (WAFBO) units, the latter being supported by Sotoan Army scouts. The three-day siege ended on June 5, when the WAFBOs breached the embassy and killed four terrorists, having lured out two and killing them as well.

Background

Capitalism Retaliation was a terrorist group that formed in the summer of 1991 after a Sotoan coup d'etat ousted dictator Sergio Valdez from power. Capitalism Retaliation grew to number 1,000 members in South Verusea, 600 of which were in Sotoa. Capitalism Retaliation had only coordinated small attacks, and were not regarded as an imminent threat. They backed The Falcons of Dawn for a short period of time, but later drifted away.

Following the Circum-Pacific War and the Wielvakian-Erusean Conflict, the economies of all five countries were unstable. Capitalism Retaliation targeted Yuktobania to remove its place as the continent's head, but a terrorist plot was thwarted. They regrouped and decided to strike Wielvakia instead. The strike force consisted of David Selitz, the leader, and five others who have not yet been identified. Only Selitz spoke fluent English.

The Embassy itself comprised of four buildings arranged around a central fountain. All four were double storied and had a substantial amount of space. The Northeast Building was the central administration, and the Northwest Building was a meeting center. The remaining two were either not in use or left for storage or lower priority matters.

Terrorist Takeover

On June 2, 2015, at 10:10 am Sotoan Mean Time (SMT), a newly purchased SUV parked in front of the embassy. Selitz was the first to leave the van, and entered the Northeast building, where he took a seat. Two others followed after ten minutes, and entered the Northeast building as well. Five minutes afterward, the remaining three left the van and went to the remaining three buildings. All carried duffel bags that contained rifles and ammunition, as well as IEDs.

At 10:26 AM, Selitz drew his rifle and fired two shots into the ceiling, which passed harmlessly through. The door was secured by a tripwire bomb. The people inside were told by Selitz to sit on the ground and not speak. All communication devices were taken. The same process repeated itself in the other three buildings simultaneously. The blinds were drawn and the lights were turned off. The phone line and alarms were cut off. Selitz and his right hand man later took the ambassador hostage and took control of his office, securing the door with another IED.

Across the four buildings, 35 hostages were taken: 26 in the Northeast Building, 5 in the Northwest Building, and 4 in the Southwest Building. The Southeast Building was empty at the time, and would later become a watch tower of sorts for the terrorists.

Authorities Alerted

The local Sotoan Authorities were alerted at 10:28 AM by locals who had heard gunshots. The situation escalated once police arrived on scene, and the surrounding square kilometer was evacuated. The milita arrived as well as a small army contingent.

Terrorist demands

Capitalism Retaliation contacted the Wielvakian Congressional Leader at 11:00 AM (11:30 PM in Wielvakia) via video call, and introduced himself and his fellow conspirators. He then showed a video of the hostages with a rifle pointed at them as well as the IEDs on the doors. Next, he demanded 676 billion Zollars from the Republic of Wielvakia, with a deadline of June 6 at 11:00 AM SMT. If the deadline was not met, the Embassy would be bombed.

Wielvakian Intervention

The video was kept a secret; however, Sotoan News Agencies had already developed full coverage of the situation (but later had to retreat due to the secrecy required), and news travelled quickly around the world. The Wielvakian Air Force Black Ops (WAFBO) quickly put together a rescue team of 100 troops to recover the hostages unharmed. The ransom would go unpaid.

WAFBO Arrival and siege

At 1:15 PM SMT, a C-17 with the WAFBO units took off from Davis Monthan Air Force base in Tucson, bound for North Point for a fuel/supplies/strategy stopover. They arrived at North Point at 7:15 PM SMT. They departed again after 45 minutes, and arrived over Sotoan Airspace at 12:45 AM SMT on June 3. A HALO jump was performed at 27,000 ft, after which the C-17 landed at an airbase in Southern Sotoa. The WAFBO landed on roads and rooftops, and a command center was quickly set up 500 ft away. Both the command center and the insertion in general were not detected by the terrorists.

During the small hours of the morning of June 3, a camera was planted in the Ambassador's office by Sotoan Army scouts under the cover of WAFBO snipers.

On the morning of June 3, twenty WAFBOs approached the Embassy. Ten were armed, but only for safety. All were there for the sole purpose of ensuring the safety of the hostages. Selitz opened the door, and the three terrorists in the Northeast Building pointed and waved pistols and AKs at the WAFBOs, who were later ordered to lower their weapons.

Among the twenty was Major Julian Hallesen, the WAFBO team leader and negotiator. He bartered with Selitz for ten minutes, and was able to secure the reception of food, water, and first aid supplies at the expense of the WAFBOs retreat. The care package also contained a phone, which was also used for negotiation.

As the day pressed on, Hallesen contacted Selitz multiple times, urging him to release the terrorists and be pardoned by the WAFBOs. The terrorists declined all offers, pressing further their demands. Selitz was shown to be a skilled negotiator who resorted to aggression frequently. Negotiations began to break down, and the terrorists became more threatening to the hostages, while the WAFBOs' tactics turned from peaceful negotiation to increased use of force.

At 6:15 PM SMT, Selitz called Hallesen, then turned the phone over to the Ambassador. The Ambassador said that the terrorists would not answer to any offer except for their money. Selitz then took the phone and said that the Ambassador was at gunpoint (confirmed by the camera's feed), and that the deadline was 41 hours away.

After the call, Hallesen held a video call with other Wielvakian officials, and the order was given to kill any terrorist that threatened Wielvakian life.

The order trickled down the chain of command, and soon all WAFBOs had their orders. A strategy was devised to lure Selitz and his right hand man out of the embassy first, but the four terrorists in control of the embassy would remain.

At 9:33 PM SMT, a terrorist was killed by a WAFBO sniper. The terrorist was peeking out a window of the Southeast Building, and was killed with a headshot. After no IEDs went off, it was concluded that the explosives were not rigged up to a dead man's switch.

A final surrender request was sent to Selitz at 10:00 PM, with the foreshadowing of deadly force. Selitz ignored.

Raid

June 4 was spent in figuring out ways to rescue the hostages without terrorist harm. Sotoan forces cleared a 1.5 km strech of road that extended to the west of the embassy; this road would be used by WAFBOs to lead terrorists away from the embassy to pick up the ransom. Breach teams were assembled and briefed. By the evening of June 4, all preparations were ready.

At 10:00 PM, Hallesen called Selitz and informed him that the ransom was prepared, but that the pickup would have to be done in secrecy at a site south of the city. Selitz was informed that he would be picked up by unarmed WAFBOs, to which he agreed.

Two hours later, two pickup trucks arrived at the embassy, to pick up Selitz and his right hand man. A terrorist was assigned to keep overwatch on the top floor of the Northwest Building, as seen by the pre-planted camera. He watched as Selitz drove away, and continued to remain in the window. After Selitz left, the terrorist was sniped and killed.

As Selitz's convoy approached a 0.6 km radius from the embassy, an order was given by Hallesen to execute. Snipers perched on rooftops took headshots at Selitz and his right hand man, who were in different trucks. Both shots killed.

At the same time, breach teams entered the buildings. In every entry, a window was broken, a flash grenade was thrown in, and the door was destroyed by breaching charges. The terrorists were killed while they were incapacitated; however, in the Northwest Building, a terrorist panicked and fired a flurry of shots at the breaching team, wounding two WAFBOs.

After the terrorists were killed, their bodies were quickly moved to the Southeast Building to avoid the hostages from suffering any further shock. The hostages were found to be in good condition, and not showing any signs of physical abuse. They were each examined by WAFBO medics, and they were given closure and instructions by Hallesen, as well as recommending the VA for anyone who needed help for readjustment.

After the hostages were released, WAFBO arranged a casualty evacuation as well as a medical evacuation. After those departed to their respective destinations, the WAFBOs stood on guard for ten more hours until their transport could arrive.

Aftermath

The Embassy was closed on June 5, and remained closed until July 1st, when duties resumed under a joint Sotoan/Wielvakian armed guard. Security measure were heightened around the Southwestern Verusean continent as well as Wielvakian embassies around the world.

Wielvakia welcomed home the hostages and the WAFBO units with open arms. Most of the hostages recovered quickly and showed little signs of post-traumatic stress. The sensitive few found help at the VA and recovered with the aid of veterans.

WAFBO gained national fame in Wielvakia, and enrollment reached a high for a short amount of time. The President thanked the WAFBOs, the hostages for their bravery, and the Sotoan Army for their sympathy. He also denounced terrorism.

Captialism Retaliation was further eradicated in Sotoa and Yuktobania, and was not regarded as a threat after the death of their leader as well as their embarrassment, having already failed two plots. However, some small scale activity is still observed from them.

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