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Koji Sasahara, Associated Press
An anti-Prime Minister Shinzo Abe protester attends a rally with a sign in front of Abe's official residence in Tokyo Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015.

TOKYO — A special Japanese envoy in Jordan has expressed hope that both a Japanese hostage and a Jordanian pilot held by Islamic militants will return home "with a smile on their faces."

Deputy Foreign Minister Yasuhide Nakayama said he hopes the two countries can cooperate to secure the release of the two men from the Islamic State group.

Nakayama spoke to reporters Monday night after another day of crisis talks in the Jordanian capital.

Jordanian pilot Mu'ath al-Kaseasbeh has been held by the extremist Islamic State group after crashing in December.