Metro Detroit mom Rose Fenster pleaded on CNN Sunday morning for the release of her son Danny Fenster, a journalist in Myanmar snatched at an airport nearly a week ago by the military regime and reportedly jailed.
"We just want him home. Please, please, please, please release him and send him home to his family," pleaded Fenster, who appeared with her husband Buddy on CNN's "The Reliable Sources" with Brian Stelter.
The parents and their older son, Bryan, have given numerous media interviews in the past week, trying to keep Danny's situation at the forefront. Michigan lawmakers have reached out to the family and vow to stay reinforce Biden administration diplomacy. The State Department said Friday it's "deeply concerned over the situation" and has "pressed the military regime to release him immediately and will continue to do so until he is allowed to return home safely to his family."
Danny Fenster, 37, who grew up in Huntington Woods and earned a master's degree in creative writing at Wayne State University, is managing editor of Frontier Mynamar, an online and print magazine in English and Burmese.
Danny had planned to fly to Detroit to surprise his parents in Huntington Woods, whom he hadn't seen in two years. Before he could board a plane at Yangoon International Airport in Myanmar's major city last Monday, he was detained and reportedly taken to Insein Prison, which is populated with politcal prisoners.
"I'm trying to be strong and positive — and It's minute by minute, running on fumes, keeping my mind on the positive and not letting my mind going to where it could go," Rose Fenster said. "We've always had a sense of danger when he went there — yes, a sense of danger and awareness — but trust."
"It's a total nightmare; it's a total feeling of no control. It's heart-wrenching. I just want my son home no matter what it takes."
Buddy Fenster tells the station that he spoke to his son about two weeks ago and got the sense that things were continuing to deteriorate since the military took over in February.
"He voiced concern: 'All the reporters; all the journalists are leaving this country," Buddy said. "I got a feeling he thought it may be time to start heading home.
"Their efforts to squelch journalism ... just kills life. It kills freedom and it kills truth," the father continued. "They need to let him go immediately. He has not committed any crime there."
U.S. Embassy representatives in Yangon have been blocked from visiting the captive American.
Meanwhile, the Fensters have started a Moveon.org petition to pressure President Biden and Secretary State Antony Blinken to press for their son's release. Nearly 5,000 supporters added their names by Sunday night.