The bodies of two Iraqi journalists, Ali Juburi al-Kaabi and Falah Taha who were killed in Damascus on Saturday were handed over across the Syrian border with Iraq on Monday, according to news reports.

“The (Syrian) intelligence and police handed them over with the medical report of the hospital to al-Waleed outpost today (Monday),” Colonel Abdelbasit al-Hilo, the Iraqi commander of Al Waleed border post, told AFP. He said the men “were killed by knives and bullets in Jaramana area”, referring to a suburb of Damascus.

According to local news agency Aswat Al Iraq, Ali Juburi, the editor of Iraqi newspaper Al Roaa, and Falah Taha, a photojournalist for the paper, were both carrying identification from the Iraqi Journalists Union.

“We are deeply saddened at the continued, systematic killing of journalists in Syria,” said IPI Deputy Director Anthony Mills. “Syria is by far the most dangerous country in the world for reporters now. Not only do they face death, but their freedom of movement is gravely restricted. As a result, much of the brutal crisis in Syria is unfolding in a media vacuum.”

Since the beginning of the year, a total of 25 journalists and citizen reporters have been killed in Syria, according to IPI’s Death Watch.