Public Papers

Statement by Press Secretary Fitzwater on the Release of American Hostage Edward Tracy


The Syrian Foreign Ministry has informed the U.S. Embassy in Damascus that Edward Austin Tracy has been released by his captors in Lebanon and has been taken into custody of Syrian officials in Damascus. President Bush is gratified that Edward Tracy has been released and shares the happiness of all Americans for him and his family.

The President was advised by Deputy National Security Adviser Robert Gates at 7 a.m. that American hostage Edward Tracy had been released and was in Damascus. The Syrian Government had notified the U.S. Embassy Charge at about 3 a.m. that a release was imminent. The President was notified that a release was expected soon.

Just before 7 a.m., the U.S. Embassy was informed that Mr. Tracy is in the Foreign Ministry in Damascus. We understand that the U.S. Charge, John Craig, is now on his way to the Foreign Ministry.