UK

Guardian's Ghaith Abdul-Ahad missing in Libya

  • 10 March 2011
  • From the section UK
Ghaith Abdul-Ahad
Ghaith Abdul-Ahad has won several awards for his work

One of the Guardian's most experienced correspondents is missing in Libya, the UK newspaper has said.

Ghaith Abdul-Ahad, an Iraqi, last made contact with the paper on Sunday from near Zawiya, west of Tripoli.

The Guardian has been in contact with Libyan government officials in Tripoli and London to ask for help in the search for him.

The correspondent was travelling with Andrei Netto of the Brazilian newspaper Estado, who is also missing.

The paper said Mr Abdul-Ahad entered the country from Tunisia two weeks ago.

His last contact was through a third party from the outskirts of the town of Zawiya, which has seen fierce fighting in recent days.

The paper said in a statement: "The Guardian has been in contact with Libyan government officials in Tripoli and London and requested them to act urgently to discover where he is, if he is safe and well, and to establish if he is in the custody of the authorities."

The journalist, who has written for the Guardian since 2004, has spent long periods in Somalia, Sudan, Iraq and Afghanistan, reporting on the stories of ordinary people and their suffering.

He has won several prizes for his reporting, including foreign reporter of the year at the British Press Awards, the James Cameron award and the Martha Gellhorn prize.

News of his disappearance comes as a BBC team told how they were beaten, hooded and subjected to mock executions by Libyan troops and secret police.

The three men were detained on Monday as they tried, like many journalists, to get around government restrictions to reach Zawiya.

They were held for 21 hours but have now flown out of Libya.

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