New Zealand's foreign minister confirmed Monday that a New Zealand nurse has been held captive by the Islamic State group in Syria for nearly six years, information long kept secret for fear her life might be at risk.
He said he had a relationship of "trust and confidence" with the New Zealand Government. Louisa is an incredibly experienced nurse and aid worker who knew the risks of her job.
Ms Lawless said they had no information about her health.
The ICRC said it believed they were abducted by the Islamic State group (IS).
The ICRC state that they have received no information on the whereabouts of the two men since the abduction.
The ICRC said its last "credible information" regarding Akavi's well-being came in late 2018, but it had never been able to ascertain the fates of Rajab or Bakdounes.
Peters said New Zealand had sent a small multi-agency team, including special forces, to Iraq to gather information on Akavi. This non-combat team was specifically focused on locating Louisa and identifying opportunities to recover her.
"Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has led a significant and sustained whole-of-government effort".
"The New Zealand government maintains the position that it would be better not to have this case in the public domain, and I won't be commenting any further on it", she said.
Although numerous hostages were released by ISIS after their governments paid ransoms, Ms Akavi and several other British and American inmates remained there. "This is also the way we got some of our own information about Louisa's whereabouts and what she is doing".
"The government is very grateful for the cooperation of media outlets over many years in respecting this advice and undertaking not to publish. and we thank them for their principled approach".
'The past five and a half years have been an extremely hard time for the families of our three abducted colleagues, ' said Dominik Stillhart, ICRC's director of operations.
"Louisa is a true and compassionate humanitarian. Alaa and Nabil were committed colleagues and an integral part of our aid deliveries", said Stillhart, the group's director of operations.
"We are thus calling on anybody who has information on Louisa, Alaa and Nabil to urgently step forward and share this information with us." . "If our colleagues are still being held, we call for their immediate and unconditional release", he said.
"We continue to work together (with the Red Cross) to locate and recover her", New Zealand Foreign Minister Winston Peters said.
Four hostages were released by the terror group the next day, but Ms Akavi and two other workers - Alaa Rajab and Nabil Bakdounes - are still missing.
'Our family misses her very much and is concerned for her safety, ' Mr Robati said.
Some of the witnesses said they saw her performing medical duties at clinics and hospitals under Isil control.
The war in Syria, which began in 2011, has claimed more than 370,000 lives and forced millions of people to flee their homes.
But the final pocket of Isil's "caliphate", in Baghuz, eastern Syria, was captured last month and there has been no news.
There is her extraordinary courage, spending decades putting her skills and undoubted passion for nursing into practice in some of the world's most unsafe places for the International Red Cross.
"We have not spoken publicly before today because from the moment Louisa and the others were kidnapped, every decision we made was to maximize the chances of winning their freedom", Stillhart said in a statement.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights accuses ISIS of abducting thousands of people since 2014.
USA -backed forces proclaimed the capture of ISIL's last territory in Syria last month, eliminating its rule over a caliphate which it had proclaimed in Iraq and Syria in 2014.