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Published On: Sat, Jan 16th, 2016

Iran releases Saeed Abedini, Jason Rezaian, Amir Hekmati, Nosratollah Khosrawi

News Saturday morning out of Iran is that the Muslim country has released 4 U.S. prisoners, according to FARS,

Among those released are Christian pastor Saeed Abedini, Washington Post journalist Jason Rezaian, Marine veteran Amir Hekmati, and Nosratollah Khosrawi. They were all being held on various charges.

“Based on an approval of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) and the general interests of the Islamic Republic, four Iranian prisoners with dual-nationality were freed today within the framework of a prisoner swap deal,” the Tehran prosecutor’s said, the news agency reports.

Pastor Saeed AbediniTheir release reportedly came after a prisoner swap deal with the U.S. for six Iranian-Americans who were being held on sanctions-related charges, FARS reports.

“The announcement comes as Iran and the international community are expected Saturday to complete a deal in which Tehran verifies the curtailment of its efforts to build a nuclear weapon in exchange for getting back $100 billions in frozen assets,” according to Fox News.

While there is still no official U.S. confirmation of the release, Nagmeh Abedini, Saeed’s wife, tweeted that her husband’s release is confirmed.

“It is confirmed: Saeed is released!!!” she posted on Facebook.

Rezaian was detained by Iran in 2014 and eventually charged with espionage and other crimes, according to the Washington Post.

Hekmati was detained in 2011, weeks after arriving in Iran to visit his grandmother, according to his family’s website. The former Marine infantryman and Arabic and Persian linguist was accused of espionage and other charges in 2012.

Abedini, an Iran native and convert to Christinanity, was arrested in 2012 and convicted the next year on charges of attempting to undermine the Iranian government. He had been sentenced to eight years in prison.

His arrest came three years after he had been arrested by Iranian authorities and later released after agreeing to stop organizing churches in homes. His 2012 arrest came during a trip to help build a state-run secular orphanage.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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  1. Iran claims GOP wanted Pastor Abedini, prisoner release delayed until after election - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] imprisoned in Iran for working with an effort to build an orphanage, but after years in jail, the American pastor was finally released. Now a top Iranian official claims that Republican members of Congress directly asked the Iranian […]

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