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    This undated picture provided by Japan's Jiji Press news agency, taken at an undisclosed location, on May 30, 2016 shows Japanese freelance journalist Jumpei Yasuda holding a piece of paper with a handwritten message in Japanese. The fresh photo, which received widespread coverage in Japanese media on May 30, 2016, shows Yasuda, who has been missing for almost a year, wearing an orange shirt, his hair and beard grown long.

    First Video of Japanese Journalist Kidnapped in Syria in 2015 Released

    © AFP 2019 / JIJI PRESS
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    In 2015, a journalist who had entered Syria to cover events in the war-torn country was kidnapped by Jabhat al-Nusra*. They published a photo of him in 2016 with a demand that $10 million be paid as a ransom for his life.

    A video emerged on July 6 on Japan's Nippon News Network (NNN) website featuring Japanese journalist Jumpei Yasuda, who was captured by terrorists in Syria in 2015. In the video, the journalist says that he "is fine" and expressed hope to return to his family "soon." He also urged his family not to "give up" or "forget" him. According to the journalist's words, the video was filmed in October 2017.

    It is unclear whether the video was accompanied by another ransom demand, but the person who handed the video over to NNN said that Jumpei Yasuda's health had recently been deteriorating.

    READ MORE: Tokyo Addresses Reports on Japanese Journalist Allegedly Kidnapped in Syria

    The Japanese journalist was kidnapped by Jabhat al-Nusra* militants in 2015, soon after he crossed Turkish-Syrian border. He came to Syria in order to highlight the civil war that has been ravaging the country. The militant group posted a ransom demand for his life, threatening to pass him on to Daesh* in case their demands were not met.

    *Daesh (also known as ISIS/ISIL/IS) and Jabhat al-Nusra (also known as Tahrir al-Sham) are terrorist organizations banned in Russia


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