Syria Militants Free 48 Iranian Pilgrims

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Iran
Thursday, 10 January 2013


iranian pilgrimsForty-eight Iranians held hostage by Syrian rebels since August and threatened with execution were released on Wednesday, Iranian state television reported.

The Iranians, were freed in deal exchanging them for 2,130 prisoners held by the Syrian regime, a

Iran's Fars news agency reported that the deal was brokered with the assistance of Qatar and Turkey.

On August 4, 2012, 48 Iranian pilgrims, who were traveling on a bus from Damascus International Airport to the shrine of Sayyeda Zainab (PBUH) on the outskirts of the Syrian capital were abducted by the militants.
In a video aired by the Saudi-owned al-Arabiya television network, the militants threatened to kill all the Iranian abductees if the Syrian government did not release the captured militants and if it did not stop operations against the armed groups in the country within 48 hours. The threat, however, was never carried out.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011, and many people, including large numbers of security forces, have been killed in the turmoil.
The Syrian government says the chaos is being orchestrated from outside the country, and there are reports that a very large number of the militants are foreign nationals.

"> Turkish charity told Agence France Presse.
According to news agencies, the abductees were set free in a swap deal between the Syrian government and the armed militants.
The Turkish humanitarian aid agency IHH board member Osman Atalay told Reuters most of the prisoners were Syrian but they also included some Turkish nationals and "citizens of other countries". There was no confirmation from the Syrian government.

Iran's Fars news agency reported that the deal was brokered with the assistance of Qatar and Turkey.

On August 4, 2012, 48 Iranian pilgrims, who were traveling on a bus from Damascus International Airport to the shrine of Sayyeda Zainab (PBUH) on the outskirts of the Syrian capital were abducted by the militants.
In a video aired by the Saudi-owned al-Arabiya television network, the militants threatened to kill all the Iranian abductees if the Syrian government did not release the captured militants and if it did not stop operations against the armed groups in the country within 48 hours. The threat, however, was never carried out.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011, and many people, including large numbers of security forces, have been killed in the turmoil.
The Syrian government says the chaos is being orchestrated from outside the country, and there are reports that a very large number of the militants are foreign nationals.

Rating: 5 Read 521 times Last modified on Thursday, 10 January 2013

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