US says it's concerned for missing journalist

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department says it's concerned about the welfare of an American journalist reportedly detained in Syria while covering the fighting there.

Spokesman Patrick Ventrell said Friday the U.S. is trying to confirm reports that Austin Tice is being held.

The Czech government represents American interests in Syria. It says it has information that Tice is in custody but has yet to get confirmation from Syrian authorities.

Tice was a freelance reporter working for The Washington Post and McClatchy newspapers. They said Thursday the Czech ambassador to Syria said Tice was alive.

Ventrell asked the Syrians to respond quickly to Czech inquiries into Tice's whereabouts, well-being and safety.

He also urged all sides to the fighting to ensure the safety of journalists covering the conflict.

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