Reports: One Hiker Detained in Iran to Be Released
One of the three American hikers who have been detained in Iran for more than year will be released on Saturday to mark the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, according to an Iranian official.
Officials in the Iranian culture ministry alerted reporters to the news by text message.
“Offering congratulations on Eid al-Fitr,” an official in the Iranian culture ministry told reporters by text message, referring to the celebration at the end of Ramadan, according to The Associated Press. “The release of one of the detained Americans will be at Saturday, 9 a.m. at the Estaghlal hotel.”
Saturday is also the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks.
Three Americans, Sarah Shourd, Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal, were captured by Iranian authorities in July 2009 after allegedly wandering over the Iraq-Iran border.
“We have seen the news reports and are urgently seeking further information,” the hikers’ mothers said in a statement posted on Facebook. “We hope and pray that the reports are true and that this signals the end of all three of our children’s long and difficult detention. Shane, Sarah and Josh are all innocent and we continue to call for their immediate release, so that they can return home together and be reunited with our families.”
Just minutes later, the administrator of the Facebook account, a “friend or family” of the hikers, commented on the post and said, “I AM PRAYING!!!! GOD - THANK YOU!!!”