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Louisa Akavi, 62, a nurse and midwife, who was kidnapped by ISIS in 2013. Photo: Ross Land/Getty Images

The International Committee of the Red Cross on Monday called for the release of New Zealand nurse Louisa Akavi, kidnapped by the Islamic State, or ISIS, in Syria in 2013.

"She has dedicated her life to those affected by war and violence, and she went to Syria because people needed her. She wanted to use her skills to make a difference."
— New Zealand Red Cross Secretary-General Niamh Lawless

The big picture: The New Zealand government and Red Cross kept the kidnapping of Akavi, 62, secret because of concerns that her life might be at risk. The New York Times first reported Sunday that since the Islamic State has fallen, the Red Cross has made Akavi's name public in hopes to find her alive.

The other side: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern made clear at a press conference the government did not think the media blackout should have been lifted. She declined to comment further on the issue.

Go deeper

Biden embarks on a consequential presidency

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Donald Trump tried everything to delegitimize the rival who vanquished him. In reality, he's set Joe Biden on course to be a far more consequential U.S. president than he might otherwise have become.

The big picture: President Biden now confronts not just a pandemic, but massive political divisions and an assault on truth — and the aftermath of the assault on the Capitol two weeks ago that threatened democracy itself.

Updated 14 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Inauguration Day dashboard

U.S. Capitol and stage are lit at sunrise ahead of the inauguration of Joe Biden. Photo: Patrick Semansky - Pool/Getty Images

President Biden has delivered his inaugural address at the Capitol, calling for an end to the politics as total war but warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country.

What's next: Representatives from all branches of the military escort the 46th president to the White House.

Inaugural address: Biden vows to be "a president for all Americans"

Moments after taking the oath of office, President Biden sought to soothe a nation riven by political divisions and a global pandemic, while warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country and defeat a "virus that silently stalks the the country."

Why it matters: From the same steps that a pro-Trump mob launched an assault on Congress two weeks earlier, the new president paid deference to the endurance of American political institutions.