• Another One Coming Home! American Graduate Student Released from Iranian Prison

    Surge Summary: In a prisoner exchange, an American Graduate Student has been Released from three years in an Iranian Prison and is coming home. 

    “Another American is coming home.” An early Saturday tweet from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo brought good news for sure for the family of Xiyue Wang – he’s the Chinese American graduate student who’s been held prisoner in Iran for more than three years.

    Newser‘s Jenn Gidman provides the backstory:

    CNN and NBC News report Wang, 38, was released in Switzerland as part of a prisoner swap. Two senior US officials tell the New York Times that Wang was flown Saturday on a Swiss government aircraft from Tehran to Zurich, where the State Department’s special representative to Iran met him. As part of the deal, Iran will be welcoming home scientist Massoud Soleimani, who was arrested in Chicago in 2018 and accused of violating US sanctions. The Times notes that giving up Soleimani for Wang was a “low price to pay,” as Soleimani was set to be released as early as next month anyway.

    Wang is a Princeton student who was doing PHD research when he was arrested in August 2016 in Tehran. The charges?  Espionage. The sentence? A harsh 10 years in prison. Wang has a wife, Hua Qu, and a young son. She has long lobbied for his release.

    President Trump’s statement added his own statement on the matter:

    “Freeing Americans held captive is of vital importance to my administration, and we will continue to work hard to bring home all our citizens wrongfully held captive overseas.”

    Both Trump and Pompeo thanked the Swiss government for their assistance.

    Meanwhile, Qu was predictably ecstatic upon hearing her husband was finally coming home. “Our family is complete once again.”.

    This development follows the release last month of an American professor who had been held hostage by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

    H/T: Newser‘s Jenn Gidman

    Related Story:

    What Next? After Delays, Taliban Releases Its Last American Hostage

    Image: Screen Shot; Vimeo; https://www.princeton.edu/news/2019/08/07/graduate-school-dean-appeals-release-xiyue-wang-3-year-anniversary-his-detention


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