Man: Kidnapped wife found in Cairo suburb

Mona al-Gharib, wife of a Syrian TV anchor in Egypt, was kidnapped in Cairo on Friday.

Story highlights

  • The woman is the wife of a freelance TV anchor in Egypt
  • Her husband accuses Syrian intelligence agents of carrying out the alleged kidnapping
  • Police are investigating the origins of text messages allegedly from the kidnappers
A Syrian-born broadcaster and activist working in Egypt said Saturday his kidnapped wife was found and taken to a hospital.
"My wife was found in a bad medical condition on a street in the suburbs of Cairo by a woman who took her to the hospital," said Thaer al-Nashef. "I am on my way to see her now."
Media coverage likely led to the release, said al-Nashef, indicating the abductors "were probably paid thugs."
Egyptian police did not immediately confirm his account.
Thaer al-Nashef, who describes himself as a "political activist against the Syrian regime," said Friday he believed the kidnapping of his pregnant 25-year-old wife, Mona al-Gharib, was the work of Syrian intelligence agents operating in the country.
There was no response from the Syrian government about the allegations.
Egyptian police confirmed that al-Nashef filed a police report about his wife's disappearance on Friday.
Al-Nashef said he went to the general prosecutor's office Saturday and was told officials have the phones of the suspected kidnappers under surveillance.
Al-Nashef said he was alerted to the alleged kidnapping by a text message.
"We have kidnapped your wife, you dirty dog, so you don't insult your master again," al-Nashef quoted the text as saying.
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Al-Nashef said he received further text messages from the alleged kidnappers, including one that threatened that his wife would be raped, and another saying his wife would be killed if he went to the media with the story.
A message sent Saturday, he said, read: "The Nile will deliver your wife's dead body. You killed her by opening with your big mouth to the media. You are next."
Al-Nashef's wife is an Egyptian citizen and a student at Azhar University, he said. She is six months pregnant with their second child, he said.
Al-Nashef said the messages came from an Egyptian number.
Al-Nashef is a freelance journalist in Egypt and serves as a TV anchor for several networks, including January 25 TV, which was launched after the revolution, which toppled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
The Syrian government has been accused of seeking retribution against relatives of Syrian activists working against the Bashar al-Assad regime from abroad.
The U.S. State Department announced this summer that it had received reports that Syrian mission personnel had been conducting video surveillance of people participating in peaceful demonstrations in the United States.