Widow of US hostage lashes out at policy toward captives

Widow of US hostage lashes out at policy toward captives
News from Miami Herald:

The wife of an American hostage who was killed in a U.S. counterterrorism operation in Pakistan blames his al Qaida captors for the death, but she also lashed out Thursday at what she called “inconsistent and disappointing” assistance from the Obama administration during an ordeal of more than three years.

The criticism from the wife of 72-year-old development expert Warren Weinstein, who along with Italian hostage Giovanni Lo Porto was killed in a U.S. strike on an al Qaida compound in January, adds to a chorus of protests from families who claim the U.S. government could have done more in its efforts to bring captive Americans home before they were killed in captivity.

The families say the U.S. government is long overdue a central coordinator for hostage recovery so that opportunities don’t fall through the cracks of a diffuse interagency process.

“We hope that my husband’s death and the others who have faced similar tragedies in recent months will finally prompt the U.S. government to take its responsibilities seriously and establish a coordinated and consistent approach to supporting hostages and their families,” Weinstein’s wife, Elaine, said in a statement.

An internal review is under way to update the Obama administration’s hostage policies, though the most controversial piece – the longtime U.S. refu…………… continues on Miami Herald

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Sawyer Sweeten of ‘Everybody Loves Raymond’ commits suicide
News from Los Angeles Times:

Actor Sawyer Sweeten, best known as Geoffrey Barone on the popular sitcom “Everybody Loves Raymond,” committed suicide Thursday at his family’s home in Texas, his rep confirmed to the Los Angeles Times. He was 19.

“We are devastated to report that our beloved brother, son, and friend, Sawyer Sweeten, took his own life,” said a statement from sister Madylin Sweeten. “At this sensitive time, our family requests privacy and we beg of you to reach out to the ones you love.”

Sawyer Sweeten was weeks away from his 20th birthday, his sister said.

On…………… continues on Los Angeles Times

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