Spanish reporters taken hostage in Syria 'moved to Idlib'

Possibly in the hands of the local Al-Qaeda affiliate

22 July, 15:40

    (ANSAmed) - GAZIANTEP (Southern Turkey), JULY 22 - The three Spanish journalists who disappeared 10 day ago were reportedly taken hostage in the city of Aleppo and later moved to the region further east, Idlib.

    The latter is partially under the control of the local Al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat Al-Nusra. Local sources in Aleppo that are in contact with armed factions in the city reported the news to ANSA. The sources rule out that they may have been taken by the Islamic State (ISIS), which is not present in the area. The sources say that the three were taken for the purpose of a ransom and not for political reasons. Spanish authorities have initiated diplomatic and intelligence activities to find the three freelance journalists - Antonio Pampliega, Angel Sastre and Josè Manuel Lopez. Foreign Minister Josè Manuel Garcia Margallo said on Wednesday morning that Madrid is in contact with Turkey and all ''friendly nations'' on the issue. Margallo has discussed the matter with UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan De Mistura. Margallo implied that the three had been taken hostage by saying that ''all previous incidents went well'. Since 2013, four Spanish journalists have been taken hostage in Syria, all of whom were later released. (ANSAmed).

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