Kidnapped American Journalist Released By Ukrainian Separatists

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
April 24 2014 8:25 PM

Kidnapped American Journalist Released By Ukrainian Separatists

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American journalist Simon Ostrovsky arrives at a hotel in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk after being freed, on April 24, 2014.

Photo by Alexander KHUDOTEPLY/AFP/Getty Images

Separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine released Vice journalist Simon Ostrovsky on Thursday. Ostrovsky, an American video journalist, was taken prisoner three days ago while working on report for the news organization. Vice News issued a statement saying it was “delighted to confirm that our colleague and friend Simon Ostrovsky has been safely released and is in good health.”

Orstrovsky also Tweeted his release on Thursday:

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Here’s more on his capture, and release, from the New York Times:

Jean-François Bélanger, a correspondent for Canada’s state broadcaster, CBC, reported on Twitter that Mr. Ostrovsky left Slovyansk a short time later in his company. The Vice News correspondent, Mr. Bélanger said, had been beaten and blindfolded when he was seized late Monday but later was treated well… Shortly after Mr. Ostrovsky was released, Vice News published a video report filmed just before his detention in which he subjected Vyachislav Ponomaryov, a separatist who has appointed himself the mayor of Slovyansk, to skeptical questioning. Mr. Ostrovsky, a former BBC and Al Jazeera reporter, appeared to unsettle Mr. Ponomaryov by not accepting at face value his claim that a gun battle near the town over the weekend was an attack by right-wing ultranationalists from Kiev. Following his release, Mr. Ostrovsky told Agence France-Presse that the separatists had specifically sought him out.

Elliot Hannon is a writer in Washington, D.C. Follow him on Twitter.

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