(Vatican Radio) The Custody of the Holy Land announced late Monday that the Fr. Dhiya Aziz, OFM has been liberated, and the Custos, Franciscan Fr. Pier Battista Pizzaballa confirmed the announcement in brief remarks to Vatican Radio.
“The situation remains very grave and dramatic in Syria, though we are doubtless happy and relieved that Fr. Dhiya [Aziz] has been released,” he said. The Custody had had no news of the Fr. Dihya since Saturday, July 4, in the late afternoon. Fr. Dhiya was allegedly treated well during his kidnapping.
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A statement from the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land thanks those around the world who prayed for a successful outcome to this trial that Fr. Dhiya endured, as well as the faithful of Yacoubieh, of which he is the pastor, his religious family and his family in Iraq.
The statement goes on to say, "The Custody does not forget that other religious are still missing in Syria and it invites everyone to continue praying for peace in [that] country."