US scribe’s family asks for main opposition's help

US scribe’s family asks for main opposition's help

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
US scribe’s family asks for main oppositions help

Tice last contacted his family on Aug 12. His family is seeking help from CHP.

The family of missing American journalist Austin Tice, who disappeared while covering the Syrian conflict, has appealed to Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) executives for help. The family is expected to visit Ankara to meet with CHP lawmakers.

Tice was last seen in the Syrian capital Damascus’ suburb of Darayya and has been missing since then for four months. The 31-year-old journalist, who works for the Washington Post and McClatchy Newspapers, last contacted his family on Aug. 12. In his last Twitter post on Aug. 11, Tice wrote that he spent his birthday at a pool party with rebel Free Syrian Army members. A video clip posted online in late September showed Tice alive and being held by gunmen. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland previously said they believed that Syrian authorities had taken Tice into custody. But, Syria has not confirmed his detention.

Tice’s family contacted the CHP via the Journalists Without Borders organization, in order to request the help of the deputies who contributed to the rescue of a Turkish journalist held by Syrian authorities last week.

A delegation composed of CHP lawmakers went to Syria and managed to bring Turkish journalist Cüneyt Ünal home safely after three months in a Syrian prison.

Speaking to the Hürriyet Daily News on Nov. 23, CHP Hatay Lawmaker Mevlüt Dudu, who was among the delegation to whom Ünal was handed over, said that although they did not have much information about Tice yet, they would exert efforts toward finding him.

CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu also vowed to assist Tice. “Our duty is to stand behind those who are mistreated and are suffering, regardless of their identity, nationality or beliefs. My fellow deputies will endeavor to assist in this issue as well, because we make efforts if journalists are in trouble,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.