British journalist John Cantlie in ISIS-held Mosul, December 7, 2016. Photo: Amaq News Agency video / AFP
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – John Cantlie, a British journalist held captive by Islamic State (ISIS) militants since 2012, may still be alive in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor, according to the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) press spokesman.
Nothing has been heard from Cantlie since 2016.
Cantlie, a freelance photojournalist, was captured alongside US colleague James Foley in November 2012 and handed over to ISIS.
Foley was the first of several western journalists and aid workers murdered by ISIS in 2014. Graphic footage of their bodies was posted on YouTube.
Cantlie appeared in a series of ISIS propaganda films called ‘Lend Me Your Ears’ dressed in an orange prison uniform condemning the US and British governments.
He later appeared in a series of films about life inside ISIS-held cities. He was last seen in a short film set in Mosul on December 13, 2016.
Canlie’s name also appeared in the byline of several articles in the ISIS magazine Dabiq.
It is unclear whether the views he expressed were his own or whether he was speaking under duress.
His family and supporters have continued to appeal for information as to his whereabouts.
ISIS controls a shrinking area in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor, near the Iraqi border. It is unclear how many captives the group still holds.