JOHANNESBURG, South African photojournalist Shiraaz Mahomed, who was captured a year ago in Syria while travelling back to the Turkish border, has been confirmed alive, says aid group Gift of the Givers.
Gift of the Givers founder Imtiaz Sooliman said Tuesday he had received credible information on the status of Mahomed, who was captured while recording and broadcasting the hardships of the Syrian people to whom he delivered food and blankets in refugee camps.
Sooliman said the confirmation was the culmination of numerous messages from unidentified sources which Gift of the Givers had been receiving since September, suggesting the photojournalist was alive.
We couldn't give Shiraaz's family false hope as the information could not be verified no matter how credible the source, Sooliman said.
The breakthrough came after a list of ten questions which Gift of the Givers had prepared in consultation with Mahomed's family all came back correctly answered by the captive.
Last night was the turning point finally, we have proof of life, Sooliman said. Now comes the daunting challenge � why was Shiraaz captured and what do they want? We await that 'voice'.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK