TORONTO – A Canadian legal adviser who worked in the Golan Heights as part of a peacekeeping mission with the United Nations has been released.
Carl Campeau, a legal adviser to the UN Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF), was turned over to the United Nations after he was reportedly captured by rebel fighters eight months ago.
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“We can confirm that Carl Campeau, a staff member of the UN Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) who was abducted in February, is now free,” said spokesperson for the Secretary-General Marlene Tremblay-Gervais. “He is now with the United Nations. Initial indications are that he is in good health.”
It is still unclear how Campeau’s released was secured.
The Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada said in a statement that Campeau will receive whatever support he requires.
“We are thrilled at the news that Carl Campeau has been released in Syria,” said DFATD spokesperson Jean-Bruno Villeneuve in an email. “[Campeau’s] ordeal is a reminder to all Canadians of the incredibly dangerous situation in Syria.”
Back in February, the United Nations confirmed that one of its staff members went missing along the Syrian-Israeli border. Media reports in Israel identified the man as Campeau.
Canada participated in the peacekeeping mission along the Syrian border from its inception in 1974 until 2006, when the last of its troops were withdrawn as the Afghan war ramped up.
According to The Canadian Press, Campeau was a civilian working directly for the United Nations and is not acting on behalf of the Canadian government.
Canada continues to advise Canadians to avoid all travel to Syria.
Reported By The Canadian Press