Spanish journalists kidnapped by al Qaeda group in Syria

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Members of a group affiliate with al Qaeda have kidnapped two experienced Spanish journalists in Syria, the newspaper El Mundo said on Tuesday.

One of the journalists, Javier Espinosa, works for El Mundo, while the other, Ricardo Garcia Vilanova, is a freelance photojournalist, CNN reported. Both were taken on Sept. 16. El Mundo didn’t report the kidnappings until now, at the request of the men’s families, CNN said.

The pair have often traveled to Syria together. But their latest journey went awry at a checkpoint in the Raqqa province near the border with Turkey. They were getting set to leave Syria when armed members of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, an al Qaeda backed group, grabbed them.

Even after all these weeks, it’s still not clear what the terrorist group wants in exchange for the journalists’ return, CNN reported.

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