The U.S. released a top Iranian scientist Mojtaba Atarodi in April as part of the dealings with Iran in Geneva recently, the Times of Israel reported.
The secret back channel of negotiations between Iran and the United States, which led to this month’s interim deal in Geneva on Iran’s rogue nuclear program, has also seen a series of prisoner releases by both sides, which have played a central role in bridging the distance between the two nations, the Times of Israel has been told.
In the most dramatic of those releases, the US in April released a top Iranian scientist, Mojtaba Atarodi, who had been arrested in 2011 for attempting to acquire equipment that could be used for Iran’s military-nuclear programs.
Reportedly, American hikers Sarah Shourd, Shane Bauer, and Josh Fattal were individuals the Iranians released in 2010 and 2011 as part of the dealings. In 2012, the United States began to reciprocate with its own release of Iranian prisoners Shahrzad Mir Gholikhan, Nosratollah Tajik, and Amir Hossein Seirafi.
According to the Times of Israel, Gholikhan was convicted on three counts of weapons trafficking.