Iran again calls on US to release 19 detained Iranians

AP News
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Posted: Aug 26, 2015 6:18 AM
Iran again calls on US to release 19 detained Iranians

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman has again raised the issue of 19 Iranians held in the U.S., calling for them to be released amid the trial of a detained Washington Post reporter.

Marzieh Afkham did not specifically mention journalist Jason Rezaian by name in her comments Wednesday at a news conference. However, it comes as speculation is rising that Iran could seek to swap Rezaian or other Americans for the Iranians.

Rezaian awaits a verdict in his closed-door espionage trial in a case widely criticized by the U.S., press freedom organizations and the Post. He reportedly faces up to 10 to 20 years in prison if convicted.

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Two other Americans are held by Iran, while another went missing in 2007 while working for the CIA on an unapproved intelligence mission.