Turkish hostages in Iraq released after 'diplomatic negotiations': Erdogan

AFP , Sunday 21 Sep 2014

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Photo: AP)

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Sunday dozens of Turkish hostages held by Islamic State militants in Iraq had been freed as a result of negotiations and no ransom had been paid for their release.

"There was no bargain for money at all, but only diplomatic and political negotiations. And this is a diplomatic victory," Erdogan told reporters at Ankara's Esenboga Airport before departing for New York for a UN General Assembly meeting.

Forty-six Turks seized from the Turkish consulate in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul were freed and returned to Turkey on Saturday, in what Erdogan described as a "secret operation" by the Turkey's spy agency.

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