Austin Tice, former UH student, remains missing a decade later
Sunday marks 10 years since the disappearance of Houston journalist and former UH student, Austin Tice. In the decade following his disappearance, Tice’s family refuses to lose hope, creating a website and social media campaigns, recently speaking with President Joe Biden about a safe return.
“On the tenth anniversary of his abduction, I am calling on Syria to end this and help us bring him home,” Biden said in a statement. There is no higher priority in my Administration than the recovery and return of Americans held hostage or wrongfully detained abroad.
Traveling to Syria in 2012, Tice, a former member of The Cougar, covered the country’s civil war and began to head south of Damascus to finalize his pieces. The day he was scheduled to leave, Tice was detained and eventually held hostage, with a video surfacing five weeks later showing proof of life. Since then, no further proof has been provided.
Biden claims he knows “with certainty” that Tice has been held by the Syrian government and has continuously called on its leaders to work with him and his administration to return Tice to his family.
While Syrian officials have continuously refused meetings and conversations regarding Tice’s status, the Hostage Recovery Fusion Cell, State Department and Biden’s administration continue to engage, stating they “will not rest” until Tice is brought home.
“The thing that’s going to change for journalists is that we begin to develop an appetite for real news,” Tice’s mother, Debra Tice, previously told The Cougar. “We will not tolerate that they are silenced. We will not tolerate that they are captured, because we want what they serve.”