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Syria - Two Swedish journalists reported missing near Lebanese border

Source: Reporters Without Borders - Wed, 27 Nov 2013 04:23 GMT
Author: Reporters Without Borders
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Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Reporters Without Borders is very concerned about two Swedish journalists, Magnus Falkehed and Niclas Hammarstrom, who went missing in Syria near the Lebanese border on 23 November.

The Swedish government confirmed their disappearance yesterday, as the United Nations General Assembly adopted its first-ever resolution on the safety of journalists.

Normally based in Paris, Falkehed works for many Swedish publications including the daily Dagens Nyheter and the magazine Sydsvenskan. Hammarstrom is a freelance photographer.

According to a Reporters Without Borders tally, their disappearance brings to 18 the number of foreign journalists who are kidnapped, detained or missing in Syria.

Two more Syrian news providers have meanwhile been kidnapped. One is Muhaemin Al-Halabi, a French literature student at Aleppo University and a news and information activist, who abducted at a checkpoint on the Zakia (Maskana) road east of Aleppo as he was travelling to Khanasir yesterday. Fellow passengers said their vehicle was stopped by gunmen who asked them to identify themselves. When Halabi gave his name, they beat him and took him away.

The other is Shahba Press reporter Yasser Al-Sattouf (also known as Abu Ahmed Al-Deirahafri), who was kidnapped by gunmen outside Deir Hafir Hospital in east Allepo on 20 November.

Ziad Al-Homsi, a Damascus-based photographer kidnapped at a checkpoint north of Aleppo on 28 October, was released on 24 November.

According to the information obtained by Reporters Without Borders, a total of 22 Syrian news providers are currently missing, kidnapped or detained by armed groups in northern Syria.

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