The Russian embassy in Damascus said that it was working in coordination with the Syrian regime to uncover the location of the head of the Russian “Alternativa” rights movement, Oleg Melnikov, who disappeared in the Syrian province of Idleb.
On Wednesday, the Russian TASS agency quoted the Russian embassy in Damascus as saying that Moscow was working to get information to confirm Oleg’s fate. It added that: “We are working with our Syrian colleagues to verify the available information and confirm Oleg Melnikov’s fate. This is not an easy task, because all of Idleb province is under the control of militants.”
Melnikov had gone with a group of volunteers to Idleb province to search for two children from Kazakhstan and get them out on Aug. 10, 2019. But his colleagues lost contact with him when he was in the town of Salqin in the Harem area in Idleb, which is under rebel control.
According to the Russia Today website, the Alternativa movement works to fight slavery. It said that its president had likely disappeared to a secret area in Idleb fleeing militants and said that he was still alive.
The movement said that, “if Oleg is hiding in a secret apartment, this means that one of the residents is hiding them. But these people cannot transport him to territory under the control of authorities. The risk here is very large, especially since there is a reward for information about his whereabouts.
The group said that it had been working over the last few years to look for children who were taken by Arab parents from their mothers to the Middle East and it likewise searched for missing Russian citizens.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.