US researcher kidnapped in Syria in 2012, freed

Washington - A young American who has been held hostage for two years by an Islamic rebel group in Syria was released on Sunday to UN peacekeepers in the Golan Heights, US and UN officials said.

"Finally he is returning home," US Secretary of State John Kerry said in a statement, confirming the release of Theo Curtis, an American researcher whose disappearance in Syria had not been previously reported.

Curtis was handed over to UN peacekeepers in the village of Al Rafid, Quneitra in the Golan Heights and after undergoing a medical checkup was turned over to US representatives, the United Nations said.

The news of his release came less than a week after a video surfaced showing the slaying of captive US journalist James Foley at the hands of an Islamic State militant.

"Particularly after a week marked by unspeakable tragedy, we are all relieved and grateful knowing that Theo Curtis is coming home after so much time held in the clutches of Jabhat Al-Nusrah," Kerry said referring to the Al-Nusra Front, another Islamic rebel group operating in Syria.

Kerry said the United States had reached out to more than two dozen countries for help in securing Curtis' release, and that of any other American held hostage in Syria.

Kerry's statement said Curtis' mother was from Massachusetts and had "worked indefatigably to keep hope alive that this day could be a reality".

US National Security Adviser Susan Rice said she expected Curtis to be reunited with his family shortly.

"Just as we celebrate Theo's freedom, we hold in our thoughts and prayers the Americans who remain in captivity in Syria," she said.

She recalled Foley's killing, which she said "shocked the conscience of the world," and said the

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Solomon Repeant 2014-08-24 08:52:39 PM
u a one of the luckiest ,,lucky
Mohammed Salajee 2014-08-24 09:24:32 PM
One thing the captives wil treat u humane did anyone follow "yevon ridly"a British journalist a lady how she was treated by the Taliban & eventually she became a Muslim.she told the world the "TRUTH"But the other way round wen israhell & company USA "Gwantanamo" kidnap they torture.WAT A world we live in.U CANT change the thinking of a "Jew"or for that matter war mongre's.
Kuhle Sikota 2014-08-24 10:40:08 PM
Gavin J Dandridge 2014-08-25 05:04:57 AM
Israel is not just indiscriminately firing rockets into Gaza. Hamas is constantly firing rockets into Israel they just have a better defensive system and we all know that rockets are being fired from the buildings Israel is bombing. Muslims have no social conscience unless it's about Islam. The rest of us don't matter we are just infidels.
Mesuli Jamaica 2014-08-25 05:21:54 AM
US must be very careful here,those released are released for a reason.They have sold thier fate, that is why are free,watchout US.
Mohammed Salajee 2014-08-25 06:47:45 AM
I don't support the extremist but u always wil support the west weather they r right or wrong.I'm for justice & peace every human is equal as the prophet MOhomed's teaching.Is the blood of a white man different in colour Arabs r white I'm white I don't feel the diff."GOD ALONE is here to judge"