News / Middle East

Parents of American Journalist Missing in Syria Appeal for Help

Debra, right, and Marc Tice, parents of Austin Tice, a journalist who has been missing in Syria since August this year, answer questions from journalists at the Press Club in Beirut, November 12, 2012.
Debra, right, and Marc Tice, parents of Austin Tice, a journalist who has been missing in Syria since August this year, answer questions from journalists at the Press Club in Beirut, November 12, 2012.
Paige Kollock
The parents of an American journalist who has been missing in Syria since mid-August say they have no idea who is holding him. The mother and father of Austin Tice pleaded for information about their son as they spoke to reporters in Lebanon's capital on Monday.

The 31-year old former U.S. Marine disappeared in August while reporting on Syria's civil war for various news outlets.

A law school student and fledgling journalist, Tice travelled to Syria in May - crossing without a visa across the Turkish border. He submitted several news articles from Syria before he disappeared. His parents last heard from him on August 13.

A video clip posted online in late September showed Tice held captive by gunmen. But there is no evidence as to who those gunmen might be.

“We know that we’re not the only family that’s suffering," said his father Marc Tice. "Austin’s silence has given us some understanding that so many families in this part of the world are suffering. We ask whoever is holding Austin to treat him well, to keep him safe and to return him to us as soon as possible.”

Marc and Debra Tice, the parents of seven children, are from the U.S. city of Houston, Texas. They travelled to Beirut hoping to gather more information on the whereabouts of Austin.

“My precious Austin, I love you dearly, I hold you tenderly in my heart and I pray for you constantly," said Debra Tice, addressing her son directly. "Be assured we will do all we can to bring you safely home.”

The U.S. State Department believes Austin is being held by the Syrian government. The video posted could not confirm that, and experts are questioning its authenticity.
During the press conference, the Tices said they had contacted the Syrian government, which said it knew nothing of Austin’s whereabouts. They also said they will do "whatever it takes" to get him back.

Tice is one of several journalists who have gone missing in Syria.

Two journalists working for U.S. government-funded Alhurra TV, correspondent Bashar Fahmi and cameraman Cuneyt Unal, have been unaccounted for since August, when they were reporting in and around Aleppo.

The Broadcasting Board of Governors, the parent organization of Alhurra and the Voice of America, has urged the Syrian government to ensure their safety.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Researcher: Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor at Symposium on Obesity, Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome says problem involves more than calorie intake, warns of worldwide health impact More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: raafat,abou-ikdeh from: cleveland,ohio
November 12, 2012 4:17 PM
dear, sir mam forgive me our country under a lot of un rest but that means you must not lose any hope to get your loved one back . i am sorry that your son in this situation and i hope you will unite with him .

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thoughti
X
George Putic
May 26, 2015 9:26 PM
Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video US-led Coalition Gives Some Weapons to Iraqi Troops

In a video released Tuesday from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, Iraqi forces and U.S.-led coalition troops survey a cache of weapons supplied to help Iraq liberate Mosul from Islamic State group. According to a statement provided with the video, the ministry and the U.S.-led coaltion troops have started ''supplying the 16th army division with medium and light weapons in preparation to liberate Mosul and nearby areas from Da'esh (Arabic acronym for Islamic State group).''
Video

Video Amnesty International: 'Overwhelming Evidence' of War Crimes in Ukraine

Human rights group Amnesty International says there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes in Ukraine, despite a tentative cease-fire with pro-Russian rebels. Researchers interviewed more than 30 prisoners from both sides of the conflict and all but one said they were tortured. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Washington Parade Honors Those Killed Serving in US Military

Every year, on the last Monday in the month of May, millions of Americans honor the memories of those killed while serving in the armed forces. Memorial Day is a tradition that dates back to the 19th Century. While many people celebrate the federal holiday with a barbecue and a day off from work, for those who’ve served in the military, it’s a special day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Arash Arabasadi reports for VOA from Washington.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.

VOA Blogs