U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Other State Department Archive SitesU.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Home Issues & Press Travel & Business Countries Youth & Education Careers About State Video
 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2001 > January
January 31, 2001

Kidnaping of New Tribes Mission Members

PRESS STATEMENT
Richard Boucher, Spokesman
Washington, DC
January 31, 2001


Eighth Anniversary of Kidnaping of New Tribes Mission Members

Today marks the eighth anniversary of the kidnapping of our fellow U.S. citizens Dave Mankins, Mark Rich, and Rick Tenenoff, members of the New Tribes Mission (NTM). These dedicated missionaries were kidnapped in Panama by members of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) on January 31, 1993 and then taken to Colombia. The return of these three men remains a high priority for the U.S. Government. We are committed to working with the families, the New Tribes Mission and the Colombian Government to resolve this kidnapping.

Throughout 1993, members of the FARC tried to exact a multi-million dollar ransom for the missionaries. Since December 1993, the kidnappers have provided no information on the welfare and whereabouts of Mr. Mankins, Mr. Rich, and Mr. Tenenoff. The FARC has repeatedly declined to provide any information on the three missionaries, despite direct appeals for information by President Pastrana and senior Colombian officials, by a State Department official in December 1998 and by Members of Congress and other concerned individuals. The FARCís unwillingness to account for its actions has imposed inhuman hardship on the missionariesí families. We again call upon the FARC to respond to the requests for information on the welfare and whereabouts of Mr. Mankins, Mr. Rich and Mr. Tenenoff.

The Department has continued to work closely with the Colombian Government and has raised this issue at the highest levels with the Pastrana Administration. We are gratified by the response of President Pastrana to the plight of the New Tribes Mission families. We welcome the Colombian Governmentís persistent willingness to investigate potential leads to resolve this case.

We continue to work closely with the New Tribes Mission organization and remain committed, as a matter of the highest priority, to working for the return of Mr. Rich, Mr. Tenenoff, and Mr. Mankins to their families. We call upon those responsible within the FARC to come forth with a complete account of our missing fellow citizens.

[end]



  Back to top

U.S. Department of State
USA.govU.S. Department of StateUpdates  |   Frequent Questions  |   Contact Us  |   Email this Page  |   Subject Index  |   Search
The Office of Electronic Information, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as a portal for information from the U.S. State Department. External links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views or privacy policies contained therein.
About state.gov  |   Privacy Notice  |   FOIA  |   Copyright Information  |   Other U.S. Government Information

Published by the U.S. Department of State Website at http://www.state.gov maintained by the Bureau of Public Affairs.