Iran Frees 4 Americans: Washington Post Report Jason Rezaian Coming Home!

  • by: Alan Duke

Iran released four Americans from custody, including the Washington Post's Tehran correspondent Jason Rezaian, who had been held since July 2014 on spy charges.

Also freed were former U.S. MarineAmir Mirza Hekmati, who Iran accused of spying for the CIA, ranian-American Christian pastor Saeed Abedini and Nostratollah Khosravi. All four had dual US-Iranian citizenship.

CNN reported that U.S. diplomatic sources confirmed the release.

The prisoner release comes just hours before a United Nation's watchdog group was to announce if Iran was complying with the nuclear deal reached between the United States and Iran last July.

Tehran Prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi said in a written statement that the release waspart of a prisoner exchange agreement with the United States. The U.S. government has not yet commented or confirmed.

The release was reported Saturday, January 16, 2016 by Iran's Naim news outlet. Naim, which is aligned to Iranian hard-liners, reported that seven unnamed Iranian-Americans held in U.S. jails are being freed in exchange. Iranian news reports have referred to Iranians held by the U.S. on charges related to violating sanctions against Iran.

The Iranian news agency IRNA reported the United States released seven Iranians. The report cited an unnamed source identifying those freed by the United States as Nader Madanlou, Bahram Mekanik, Khosro Afghahi, Arash Qahreman, Touraj Faridi, Nima Golestaneh and Ali Sabounchi as the seven Iranian nationals who have been released.

  Alan Duke

Editor-in-Chief Alan Duke co-founded Lead Stories after ending a 26-year career with CNN, where he mainly covered entertainment, current affairs and politics. Duke closely covered domestic terrorism cases for CNN, including the Oklahoma City federal building bombing, the UNABOMBER and search for Southeast bomber Eric Robert Rudolph. CNN moved Duke to Los Angeles in 2009 to cover the entertainment beat. Duke also co-hosted a daily podcast with former HLN host Nancy Grace, "Crime Stories with Nancy Grace" and hosted the podcast series "Stan Lee's World: His Real Life Battle with Heroes & Villains." You'll also see Duke in many news documentaries, including on the Reelz channel, CNN and HLN.

Read more about or contact Alan Duke

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