Franciscan Father Dhiya Aziz, kidnapped in Syria in July, has been freed, reported Vatican Radio.
"The situation remains very grave and dramatic in Syria, though we are doubtless happy and relieved that Father Dhiya has been released," Franciscan Father Pier Battista Pizzaballa, custos of the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land, said Jan. 4.
The custody had received no news on the whereabouts or condition of Father Aziz since his July 4 kidnapping. He reportedly was treated well during his captivity, Vatican Radio said.
"The custody does not forget that other religious are still missing in Syria and it invites everyone to continue praying for peace in [that] country," the custody said in a statement, Vatican Radio reported.
….as we enter the last months of 2021, we are asking readers like you to help us keep UCA News free.
For the last 40 years, UCA News has remained the most trusted and independent Catholic news and information service from Asia. Every week, we publish nearly 100 news reports, feature stories, commentaries, podcasts and video broadcasts that are exclusive and in-depth, and developed from a view of the world and the Church through informed Catholic eyes.
Our journalistic standards are as high as any in the quality press; our focus is particularly on a fast-growing part of the world - Asia - where, in some countries the Church is growing faster than pastoral resources can respond to – South Korea, Vietnam and India to name just three.
And UCA News has the advantage of having in its ranks local reporters who cover 23 countries in south, southeast, and east Asia. We report the stories of local people and their experiences in a way that Western news outlets simply don’t have the resources to reach. And we report on the emerging life of new Churches in old lands where being a Catholic can at times be very dangerous.
With dwindling support from funding partners in Europe and the USA, we need to call on the support of those who benefit from our work.