The İHH, which has been involved in negotiations in Damascus for the two journalists' release, published photos and a video of writer Adem Özköse, of Turkey's Milat daily, and freelance cameraman Hamit Coşkun with İHH Chairman Bülent Yıldırım. Yıldırım and other İHH officials met with the two men in Damascus on Saturday after negotiations with Syrian and Iranian officials.
In the video, the journalists thanked Turkish officials and the İHH for their efforts to secure their release.
Turgut Alp Boyraz, foreign news editor at Milat, earlier said the two telephoned their families on Saturday and that they are expected to be released in a few days. The İHH added on Monday that they are hopeful about securing the release of the journalists soon.
Commenting on the news that the two journalists had telephoned their families late on Sunday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said this news is good, but not good enough. “We want these brothers returned to their homes and reunited with their families. We will consider this incident over when this happens,” he said.
The prime minister also underlined that the issue has “two legs.” “I have to openly state this here: This issue has both a Syrian and an Iranian leg. Our Foreign Ministry is doing what it must on this issue, and I hope the two members of the press will soon be reunited with their families,” he said.