Abu Dhabi-based Sky News Arabia says has lost contact with crew in Syria


DUBAI, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Abu Dhabi-based Sky News Arabiasaid on Thursday it had lost contact with three crew members onassignment in northern Syria, considered the world's mostdangerous place for journalists, and appealed for help to locatethem.

The television broadcaster said reporter Ishak Moctar, aMauritanian national, cameraman Samir Kassab, a Lebanesecitizen, and a Syrian driver whose name is being withheld at his family's request, went missing while on assignment nearAleppo, northern Syria, on Tuesday morning.

The channel's head, Nart Bouran, said the team was on anassignment that was focused largely on covering the humanitarianaspects of Syria's 2-1/2-year-old civil war.

"We will continue to make every effort to contact them andto ensure their safe return so that they can continue theirvital work," Bouran said.

France's Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that two moreFrench journalists were being held hostage in Syria, taking thenumber of its captive citizens in the country to four.

The two men, Nicolas Henin, who was working for Le Pointmagazine, and Pierre Torres, who was reporting for French-Germantelevision channel Arte, were taken on June 22, but theirdisappearance had not previously been made public.

Two other journalists, veteran war correspondent DidierFrancois and photographer Edouard Elias, were abducted in earlyJune on their way to Aleppo.

Sky News Arabia said it was in contact with the journalists'families to update them on the latest developments and efforts to reach them.

Syria is the most dangerous place in the world forjournalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists says, with atleast 39 killed and 21 kidnapped in 2012 by both rebels andgovernment forces.

Most kidnapped journalists have been released, but severalremain missing.

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