Sky News Arabia Crew Goes Missing in Syria

4:23 AM PST 10/17/2013 by Patrick Brzeski
UN Journalists in Syria

The network's reporter, cameraman and driver dropped out of contact while reporting on humanitarian issues near the violence-engulfed city of Aleppo.

Sky News Arabia, the 24-hour Arabic-language news channel, has reported that one of its TV crews went missing this week while on assignment outside Aleppo, Syria's largest city. The area has been subsumed by armed conflict since civil war broke out in the country in the summer of 2012. 

The crew was reporting on the humanitarian toll of the conflict, when the network lost contact with them on Tuesday morning. Reporter Ishak Moctar, a Mauritanian national, is missing, along with cameraman Samir Kassab, a Lebanese citizen. Their Syrian driver is also MIA.

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The Abu Dhabi-based network is a joint venture between U.K. pay-TV giant BSkyB and the Abu Dhabi Media Investment Company. It launched in May of 2012 and began airing in the U.K. in March. Sky News Arabia's goal has been to become an alternative news source for Arab audiences, including the region's large under-30 demographic.

The broadcaster has put out a call for any information and assistance that might lead to the crew's safe return.

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