Iran Doctor Freed By US Returns Home After Prisoner Swap


Iran Doctor Freed By US Returns Home After Prisoner Swap

Iranian physician Majid Taheri returned home on Monday after his release from jail in the United States as part of a prisoner exchange.

Taheri was greeted at Tehran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport by Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Jaberi Ansari, reported the semi-official news agency, ISNA, which published a picture of the pair speaking to reporters.

The doctor, who had been detained in the US for 16 months, was freed on Thursday as Iran released US Navy veteran Michael White, who was imprisoned in July 2018 after being convicted of insulting Iran’s supreme leader and posting private information online.

“I hope to see the release of [other Iranians imprisoned abroad] in the near future,” Ansari said, adding his ministry would do its best to achieve this.

Taheri thanked Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

“I thank the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and dear officials, including Mr Zarif, who worked hard, and other officials who took months to help release me, as an Iranian physician accused of circumventing US sanctions on medicine,” he was quoted as saying.

Taheri was the second Iranian to return in a week after being detained in the US.

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A US federal judge issued an order to free Taheri – an Iranian-American dermatologist who had been working at a clinic in Tampa, Florida – on time served.

Taheri had been accused of violating US sanctions by attempting to export a filter to Iran that he said was for vaccine research, but that US authorities said required a licence because it could be used for chemical and biological warfare purposes.

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He was also accused of structuring a series of bank deposits below $10,000 to evade reporting requirements under federal law. In December he pleaded guilty to charges he violated financial reporting requirements by depositing $277,344 at a bank, according to court documents.

On Monday he rejected accusations against him as “unfair and false”, according to Iran’s Fars news agency.

Iran Doctor Freed By US Returns Home After Prisoner Swap


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