Newsman’s disappearance largely kept secret

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“I would not have written a post if someone had told me that there was a reasonable or even remote suspicion that anything specific would happen if I wrote the post,” Cook wrote.

He also noted that China’s Xinhua News Agency and the Breitbart website had also reported on Engel’s disappearance. Breitbart’s John Nolte attached a note to his report saying that he wasn’t even aware of any news embargo until after hearing that Engel had been released.

The news was also tweeted by a small number of journalists, apparently unaware of the embargo request.

Whether a disappearance has become widely known could influence a decision by AP on whether to withhold the news, Daniszewski said. In this case, it wasn’t clear that it had been widely circulated, he said.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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