The family of a missing British journalist, Michael Dixon, will on Saturday (18 October) mark five years since he vanished in Costa Rica.
Michael walked out of his hotel one evening in the seaside town of Tamarindo and never came back.
His brother’s own efforts turned up several leads which indicate he was the victim of a violent crime.
According to Michael’s family, Costa Rican and British authorities did nothing to ensure a proper investigation, despite the family’s appeals to former Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla and to British Prime Minister (PM) David Cameron.
Meanwhile, a recent issue of Dabiq, the flagship magazine of the Islamic State (IS or ISIS – Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), has given its version of the execution of the American journalist James Foley.
While explaining the cause of Foley’s death, the militant group says in Dabiq that his execution was a retribution for the recent American aggression against the Muslims of Iraq.
In a similar case, it’s said that Abdul-Rahman Kassig disappeared in October 2013 in Raqqa, a city in Syria. Assuming that their son is a captive of ISIS, his parents are appealing for his release using various channels including social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.
“The British Foreign Office used to send us a monthly, then a quarterly update on the case. But now we don’t even get these any more,” Michael’s brother, David Dixon, said.
“Britain has one of the biggest consular and diplomatic services in the world. Its duty is to protect British citizens. But in reality, unless there is a media outcry, the machine doesn’t care”.
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Some 45,000 British nationals visit Costa Rica every year. But in 2009, the year Michael went missing, 12 foreign tourists were murdered or vanished without trace. The authorities have promised to do more to protect visitors. But fresh cases keep turning up, according to a statement issued by Michael’s family.
“Our only hope is that someone comes forward with information. I know it’s been a long time. But Tamarindo is so small that someone must have seen something. If they’re afraid to come forward, we promise that they will be treated in strict confidence,” Michael’s mother, Lynn Dixon, said.
“We will never have peace until we know what happened to our loved one”.
The family has created a website Help Find Micheal Dixon, asking people for help.