Journalist Jumpei Yasuda Returns Home

Journalist Jumpei Yasuda returns home

Japanese journalist Jumpei Yasuda has now returned to Japan. He had been held hostage by rebel forces in Syria for more than 3 years.

The freelance journalist arrived at Narita Airport near Tokyo. He descended the stairs and got inside a waiting car.

Yasuda did not comment to the media, but his wife Myu, instead, read out a statement from him.

In the prepared remarks, Yasuda offered an apology for causing tremendous trouble and worrying many people. He thanked people for their help and support in making his return possible.

Yasuda also said that he has a responsibility to give as detailed an account of the incident as possible and that he will do so at the right time.

The Japanese journalist went missing after he entered Syria in 2015.

Yasuda gave an interview to NHK while on a flight to Istanbul, which is where he flew after his release.

He said it was hell physically and psychologically, and that he gradually lost control of himself at the thought of not being freed.

He noted that he was surprised by starting to feel that captivity in a cell was normal, adding that the thought itself is painful.

Yasuda also expressed anxiety about the future. He said he has no idea about what will happen to him or what he will do because he is unaware of what has been happening in the world for the last 3 years.

He also talked about how he was released. He said he was taken to the border by car and handed over to Turkish officials, who took him to an immigration facility.

His account reveals that the transfer was a smooth operation.

Yasuda said he had been in Idlib province and he could hear the sound of air raids and fighter aircraft.

He suggested that he had never been taken on a long trip outside Idlib province, but that he was sometimes moved from location to location inside the province.

The Japanese Foreign Ministry says it plans to interview Yasuda to clarify what happened since he went missing 3 years ago and learn about the facts concerning his release.