American Woman Held Hostage in Syria

Fighters from the Islamic State militant group

Raqqa Media Center/AP

updated 08/27/2014 AT 11:00 AM ET

originally published 08/27/2014 AT 11:50 AM ET

Family members and U.S. officials say the Islamic State militant group has been holding a young American woman hostage in Syria since last year.

The woman had been working for several humanitarian aid groups when she was kidnapped.

The U.S. government and the woman’s family requested Tuesday that she not be named out of fear of her safety.

The administration officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the issue publicly.

The woman is one of at least three known hostages of Islamic State militants in Syria. Another, James Foley, was beheaded by the militant group more than a week ago. Other American hostages were being held by other groups. These include Peter Theo Curtis, who was released by al-Nusra Front earlier this week.

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