Three years in captivity and ‘immortal captives’ are finally released in Iran

Mr. Stoyanov was released, on the morning of March 1, the following month in Tehran.

Turkish soldier Cemal Acikal was also released on March 1, and it was agreed that the men would both visit their families in Turkey.

The following day, March 2, the Turkish consul general in Tehran, Metin Cetin, received an official letter from Saeed Ajimi, the director of Turkey’s cultural attaché in Tehran, referring to the two hostages as “immortal captives.”

There were reports on March 3 that Mr. Aslan, the interpreter, was injured and would be released soon.

On March 4, Iran’s judiciary chief, Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli Larijani, and Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, spoke by phone, discussing ways of negotiating a solution for the four hostages.

One day later, Mr. Larijani’s deputy, Saeed Jalili, announced that both the interpreter and Mr. Aslan were freed and their countries should be informed of their release. He said the two had been under guard at a secret location in Tehran during most of their detention. He added that Iran was making an effort to secure the release of an Israeli and a US citizen, who have not been previously identified.

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