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Posts Tagged ‘James Foley’

Virtual Vigil Friday for Kidnapped Journalist James Foley

JamesFoleyPicTomorrow is freelance journalist James Foley‘s 40th birthday. There will be candles, but sadly, they will be of a sort that do not signify a happy occasion.

Foley was abducted in northwest Syria on Thanksgiving Day 2012 by a group of unidentified gunman and has not been seen or heard from since. In support of an ongoing grassroots campaign to bring about his release, there will be vigils tomorrow night in the U.S. and various international locations:

Please join the Foley family this Friday in a virtual and actual vigil for peace and the safe return of James Foley, in honor of Jim’s 40th birthday!

October 18, 2013
Our Lady of the Holy Rosary
Rochester, NH at 6pm

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South African Journalist Anton Hammerl Killed in Libya

When the news came this week that four journalists, including The Atlantic‘s  Clare Morgana Gillis, were finally released from Libya after six weeks, the one name that remained unaccounted for was freelance photographer Anton Lazarus Hammerl.

Because the other reporters detained around the same time as he were safe, his family retained hope that he, too, would be coming back. But as The Atlantic is now reporting, the family received word that he was in fact shot and killed by government troops on April 5th. Only when his fellow journalists were released could they break the news.

“It all happened in a split second. We thought we were in the crossfire. But, eventually, we realized they were shooting at us. You could see and hear the bullets hitting the ground near us,” James Foley, one of the detained journalists, told GlobalPost. The four journalists were forced to flee on foot because the rebel forces had driven off without them. They were running from troops loyal to Gaddafi when Hammerl was shot in the abdomen and fell.

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Four Detained Journalists Finally Released By Libyan Government

Yesterday we learned that Clare Morgana Gillis, a freelance reporter writing for The Atlantic and USA Today, was finally released by the Libyan government after being detained since April 5, 2011. Also released were American GlobalPost reporter James Foley, Spanish photographer Manuel Brabo, and British freelance reporter Nigel Chandler.

Max Fisher at The Atlantic writes that the four journalists remain in Tripoli, but it is expected that they will be allowed to leave the country tomorrow. Gillis’s mother, Jane Gillis, said, “We’re ecstatic for her release and we are looking forward to seeing her.”

The four jounrlaists have been detained for what must have been an agonizingly long six weeks. According to Fisher:

They were held for about two weeks in a coed military detention center in Tripoli. Gillis was later moved to a women’s civilian prison in the capital. The three were later moved to another facility, where a foreign intermediary was last week allowed to visit and reported the journalists were comfortable and being well fed.

Unfortunately, the whereabouts of another journalist, freelance photographer Anton Lazarus Hammerl, remains unknown since he too was detained on April 5th. A spokesman for the Austrian Foreign Ministry earlier said that they believe that Hammerl is alive and in Libyan custody.

Journalists Detained in Libya to be Released

The last we heard from Clare Gillisa journalist for The Atlantic – she was calling her parents from Libya to tell them that she was in good health. That was at the end of April, and while her parents were hopeful that the phone call would lead to her release, it hasn’t happened. Until now, that is.

According to The Associated Press, Gillis, along with James Foley, Manu Brabo, and an unnamed journalist, will be released from Libya today or tomorrow:

Ibrahim [a Libyan government Spokesperson] said the four journalists were returned to detention following the hearing on charges that they ‘entered the country illegally,’ suggesting they had not applied for and received visas before arriving to work in Libya.

He also said that arrangements were being made for their repatriation. He did not know if they would be required to pay fines before leaving.

Let’s hope that’s not the case, because they’ve surely been through enough already.

Detained Journalist Clare Gillis ‘In Good Health’

Over two weeks ago, Libyan government forces arrested and detained Clare Gillis, a reporter for The Atlantic, along with James Foley of the GlobalPost and Spanish photographer Manuel Bravo of the European Pressphoto Agency. The Atlantic is now reporting that for the first time since the journalists disappeared from contact, Gillis telephoned her parents and reported that she was in good health.

Her parents, Jane and Robert Gillis, said they were happy to learn she was safe but are concerned that she has not been released. ‘We were so relieved to hear from our daughter after having heard nothing for 16 days,’ Robert said. ‘We still urgently appeal to the Libyan government to let her come home.’

According to The Atlantic, there are no updates from the other journalists, as Gillis was separeted from them earlier this week.

Four More Journalists Detained in Libya

Pro-Qaddafi forces have taken four more foreign correspondents prisoner. They include James Foley, a freelance reporter for online news publication GlobalPost, Spanish photographer Manu Brabo, South African photographer Anton Hammerl, and Clare Morgana Gillis, an American reporter on assignment for The Atlantic. The four have been detained since Tuesday.

Max Fisher reports that The Atlantic learned of Gillis’s capture on Thursday morning and is coordinating with Human Rights Watch, Global Post, and Libyan government officials, as is the State Department.

“We appeal to the Libyan authorities for her immediate and safe release, and for that of the three other journalists detained with her,” said Atlantic editor James Bennet.