The State Department has acknowledged not only the two Americans volunteering to fight for Ukraine reportedly captured by Russia forces, but also a third American who has been missing for weeks.
"We are aware of unconfirmed reports of two U.S. citizens captured in Ukraine," State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters Thursday at the State Department press briefing. "We're closely monitoring the situation. We are in contact with Ukrainian authorities, as well as the international committee of the Red Cross, and the families of the two reported missing U.S. citizens."
Price called on Russia to afford human treatment of "prisoners of war under the Geneva conventions," regardless of how they were captured during the conflict and whether they were volunteers for the Ukrainian armed forces from a third nation.
Price also noted a third American has been reported missing in a similar capacity.
"There are reports of one addition American whose whereabouts are unknown," Price said. "I can't speak to the specifics of that case. Unfortunately, we don't know the full details of that case.
"Similarly, our understanding was this individuals had traveled to Ukraine to take up arms. This has been in recent weeks."
Price noted the State Department has "not raised this yet with the Russian Federation" about the reports of American POWs, and "we don't have independent confirmation of their whereabouts."
Price added a warning for Americans seeking to support Ukraine "channel that energy in ways that are constructive," and not volunteer for the Ukraine armed forces.
"The broader message is, we continue to urge in every way we can, American citizens not to travel to Ukraine because of the attendant dangers that is posed by Russia's ongoing aggression," Price said. "There are many individuals in this country who are well-intentioned and who want to do everything they can to help the people of Ukraine."
Eric Mack ✉
Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.
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