Tuesday, 11 January 2022 06:04

US police search for EU official missing from Washington canal path


US Park Police searched for a European Union official for a fifth day on Monday after she went missing from a canal towpath area outside Washington, D.C. last Thursday, a police spokesperson said.

Sibylle Zitko, 54, a native of Germany and a long-time legal adviser in the office of the EU Delegation to the United States in Washington, was last seen at 8 a.m. on Jan. 6, according to a Park Police Facebook posting seeking the public’s help in finding her.

Zitko was last seen in Bethesda, Maryland, where she resides, in a black Volkswagen sport-utility vehicle with Maryland license plates. Police said she was missing from the area of Lock 7 on the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal towpath in nearby Cabin John, Maryland, but declined to provide further details about her disappearance.

An EU official in Washington said the Delegation was aware of the situation involving Zitko and referred questions to the U.S. Park Police.

The canal, popular with cyclists, is under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service. A Park Police spokesperson said there were no updates in the case on Monday.

Zitko has served for more than 25 years in the EU Delegation’s Washington office and provides legal advice on trade and competition issues. She has frequently represented the European Commission in public hearings on U.S. tariff cases before the U.S. International Trade Commission.

A spokesman for the German embassy said consular officials were in touch with police about the case.