Three Spanish Journalists Kidnapped in Syria Freed


Three Spanish journalists kidnapped in Syria some 10 months ago were freed Saturday and are due to fly home from Turkey, the Spanish Press Federation and the government said.

The trio, who had been working for various Spanish media around the time of their disappearance, were last seen in July 2015 in the northwestern city of Aleppo where they had been reporting on fighting.

“All three have been released, Antonio Pampliega, Jose Manuel Lopez and Angel Sastre, and are on their way (to Spain),” said Elsa Gonzalez, president of the Spanish Press Federation (FAPE).

A source close to the Spanish government told AFP that the men were in Turkey waiting for their flight back to Spain.

“All three are well,” a government spokeswoman said, adding that Spain’s Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria had spoken to the men earlier Saturday.

Their release had been “possible thanks to the collaboration of allies and friends especially in the final phase from Turkey and Qatar,” the government said in a statement.

FAPE’s Gonzalez spoke to AFP of her “joy” over the freeing of the journalists. She declined to give any details about the kidnappers.