Austin Tice turns 39 years old today. He should be celebrating with friends & family, looking ahead to his next decade. Instead, he’s entering his 9th year of unjust detention in Syria. A veteran Marine Corps captain, Georgetown University graduate, and award-winning journalist, Austin was taken in Syria in 2012, days after his birthday, while reporting for the Washington Post, McClatchy, and other news organizations.
The U.S. government is offering a reward of up to $1 million for information leading directly to his safe return. A year ago, 173 bipartisan Members of Congress signed a letter urging President Trump to prioritize Austin’s release. “President Trump is committed to bringing Austin home,” say parents Marc (pictured) and Debra Tice, but other administration officials have blocked direct discussions with Syria.
“With each day that Austin remains imprisoned, his captors continue to insult the pride and principles of the United States,” wrote Washington Post publisher Fred Ryan today. “More than a single young man is being held hostage: An entire nation is.”
You can show your support for Austin by telling your Members of Congress that his safe return is a priority. And you can show your support for his family by joining the National Press Club on Friday at 12 p.m. ET for the unveiling of a Freedom Clock marking every moment until Austin is returned safely home.
Austin has been detained longer than any U.S. journalist in history. “Every single day, Austin needs his colleagues in journalism to ask questions about what is being done to bring him home, to dig for answers when they meet with obfuscation, and to hold U.S. government officials accountable for their actions or lack thereof,” say the Tices. Help bring him home.