Renewed hope for family of US journalist held in Syria

A number of Americans are reported as missing in Syria

Published: Updated:

The family of a US journalist being held captive in Syria said Saturday they hope the release of another American could mean their son will soon be freed too.

Russia said Friday it helped secure the release of Kevin Dawes, who was abducted in war-torn Syria in 2012 after crossing the border from Turkey, giving fresh hope to the family of freelance photojournalist Austin Tice.

“We are very happy for the Dawes family with the news of Kevin’s safe release and we can only imagine the relief he and his loved ones must be experiencing. We sincerely hope Kevin’s release is a precursor of Austin’s imminent freedom,” said a Tice family statement.

“The collaboration of Syria, Russia and the United States in Kevin’s return is quite heartening to us.”

A number of Americans are reported as missing in Syria, where ISIS has capitalized on civil war to overrun large areas in a brutal campaign.

US authorities are coy on the exact number, but officials seeking Tice’s freedom reportedly also see Dawes’s release as a positive sign.

Tice, who was 31 when he went missing, worked for The Washington Post, McClatchy and other US media outlets until he disappeared in Syria in August 2012.

A video released a month later showed the journalist blindfolded and held by armed men. He has not been heard from since.