Three Spanish journalists missing in Syria

Syria's second city, Aleppo, above, has been ravaged by the four-year-long civil war and is now carved up into rebel- and government-held areas. File photo

Three Spanish freelance journalists have gone missing in Syria, the president of a Spanish press federation says.

Jose Manuel Lopez, Antonio Pampliega and Angel Sastre entered Syria on July 10 “and there has been no news of them since July 12”, Elsa Gonzalez, president of the Federation of Press Associations of Spain, told national television.

The men were reporting from the north-western Aleppo region. 

“In that region there is intense fighting going on, so there is cause for concern,” Ms Gonzalez said.

“For the moment we can only call it a disappearance.”

Mr Pampliega, a freelance journalist covering war zones, contributed to AFP’s coverage of Syria for a period up to 2013.

Mr Lopez contributed photographs to AFP from Syria up to 2013, and has worked in various other war zones.

According to data on the website of the Madrid Press Association, Mr Sastre has worked in various trouble spots around the world for Spanish television, radio and press.

Media rights group Reporters Without Borders ranked Syria in 2014 as the most dangerous country in the world for journalists.

Three other Spanish journalists were kidnapped in Syria in 2013.

El Mundo correspondent Javier Espinosa and freelance photographer Ricardo Garcia Vilanova were held by the Islamic State group for six months and freed in March 2014.

Earlier that same month another Spanish journalist, Marc Marginedas, a correspondent for the Catalan daily El Periodico, was also released after six months in captivity in Syria.


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