Three Spanish journalist who went missing in Syria may have been kidnapped, fear Spanish intelligent officials.
A trio of Spanish journalists who had landed in Aleppo, a city in northwestern Syria, have not been heard from for 10 consecutive days and are feared to have been taken hostage my militants. The confusion over who might be behind the possible hostage situation is still unclear owing to the various terrorist factions active in the region. Various parts of the city are under extremist groups like al Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front, and other anti-government militia, reported CNN. Surprisingly, ISIS hasn’t been able to gain a stronghold within the city and continues to exert pressure from the outskirts of Aleppo.
The three journalists, Antonio Pampliega, Jose Manuel Lopez and Angel Sastre, were presumed to have entered Syria from southern Turkey on July 10. Their last contact was on July 13. Apparently, a local “fixer,” who was to work with the group has also gone missing, further complicating the rescue attempts, as revealed by the mens’ families, via a statement.
“We are now working to find them but for the time being we don’t know where they are.”
Incidentally, the Spanish Government, which had earlier denied the possibility of abduction, is now considering the same, reported Spanish daily El Pais. Meanwhile, Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Christophe Deloire appealed to the government to explore all possible options to rescue the journalists.
“We urge the Spanish government to use all possible means to find these journalists and we appeal to all parties to the conflict to respect the work of the media and to stop taking hostages for political ends. The UN Security Council’s recent Resolution 2222 pointed out that journalists covering armed conflicts are civilians, that they cannot be deliberately targeted and that they enjoy special protection.”
All three of the missing journalists may have years of experience reporting on wars and covered multiple conflicts, but the conditions in Syria aren’t akin to a proper war. The terrorist factions operating in the region aren’t bound by international laws and regularly resort to mind-numbing barbaric acts to spread terror.
Syria is undoubtedly one of the most hazardous countries in the world, not just for journalists, but also for ordinary civilians. What makes the matter worse is the complete lack of information about the possible whereabouts. Perhaps Spanish intelligence is stressing that “No theory is being ruled out,” because there have been no demands been made, reported MSN.
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