BBC journalist Alan Johnston, released early Wednesday after being held by Palestinian kidnappers for nearly four months, says his ordeal was like being "buried alive."
The British journalist spoke to reporters in Jerusalem after his release from 114 days of captivity in the Gaza Strip. He said it feels "unimaginably good to be free."
Johnston also said he might still be a captive if the Palestinian Islamist militant group Hamas had not taken control of Gaza last month. He said "the whole mood began to change" among his Army of Islam kidnappers after Hamas routed the rival Fatah forces in Gaza.
A press freedom group, Reporters Without Borders, is urging the Palestinian Authority to take measures to ensure that no more journalists are abducted in the Gaza Strip.
Reporters Without Borders said 15 journalists have been kidnapped in Gaza since 2005, noting that their abductors have never been arrested or punished. The group said such impunity must end.
BBC officials say they are "delighted and extremely relieved" that Johnston is free. His parents, in Scotland, say they are overjoyed. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown called the turn of events "a great relief."
Johnston was the only Western reporter based in Gaza when he was abducted in March.