Palestinian journalist goes missing in Syria

Norway-based writer Muheeb al-Nawathy's family suspects that he is being held by Syrian intelligence or a radical Palestinian group.

palestinian journalist 311 (photo credit: Facebook)
palestinian journalist 311
(photo credit: Facebook)
A Palestinian journalist who visited Syria a few weeks ago has gone missing, his family said on Wednesday.
The family and friends of the missing journalist, who is believed to have been arrested by the Syrian security authorities or a radical Palestinian group, have set up an account on Facebook asking for help to find him.
Palestinians expressed fear that he was being held by one of Syria’s intelligence branches or a radical Palestinian group based in Damascus.
Over the past few decades, many Palestinians who had been reported missing after entering Syria were later discovered in Syrian or Palestinian detention centers and prisons.
The journalist, Muheeb al-Nawathy, has not been in touch with his family since January 5. His family said that before that date he had been phoning them every day from Syria.
His family said that he traveled to Syria on December 28 to carry out “political research.”
Nawathy has been living in Norway since he fled the Gaza Strip after the Hamas takeover in 2007.
He had been arrested by Israeli security forces several times during the first intifada for security-related offenses.
Nawathy, a father of six, is a member of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, which has expressed deep concern over his disappearance.
The journalist’s brother, Mudar, said it was unusual for him not to be in daily contact with his wife and other family members. He added that his brother was supposed to return to Norway on January 9.
The Palestinian Journalists Syndicate appealed to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and the Syrian authorities to make every effort to find the missing journalist.
The syndicate said that Nawathy had arrived in Syria to do research for a book about Hamas that he was planning to publish soon.