A Swiss plane carrying Americans freed by the Iranian authorities departed Tehran on Sunday morning, a day after Iran and the United States concluded delicate negotiations on a prisoner exchange tied indirectly to the completion of a nuclear agreement.
Relatives of three of the freed Americans — Jason Rezaian, Amir Hekmati and Saeed Abedini — expressed joy after getting phone calls from the State Department that their family members were en route to Switzerland and then on to an American air base in Germany.
The fourth American freed in the exchange, Nosratollah Khosravi — whose incarceration had not been reported until the prisoner exchange was announced Saturday — was not on the plane, American officials said. It was not immediately clear why.
On Sunday, a senior United States official said that “our detained U.S. citizens have been released and that those who wished to depart Iran have left.” The Washington Post also released a statement confirming that Mr. Rezaian, a reporter for the newspaper, and his wife, Yeganeh Salehi, had left Iran.
Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani, did not address the prisoner swap on Sunday. At a news conference, he said that since the sanctions were lifted, the door had opened for foreign investments in the country, even by American companies.
“They can invest here anytime, but they have their own obstacles to do so,” Mr. Rouhani said. He did not comment on whether the lifting of the sanctions after two years of talks with world powers, including the United States, would lead to more cooperation by Iran in Syria. Instead, he promised Iran a new and better future.
Read more: NY Times
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