WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump has showed hope for progress with Iran after release of a US Navy veteran.
“Thank you to Iran, it shows a deal is possible,” Trump tweeted and said the United States was close to all-out war several months ago.
Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif wrote on Twitter that this could happen for all prisoners. No need for cherry picking.
“I am (happy to) announce that Navy Veteran, Michael White, who has been detained by Iran for 683 days, is on a Swiss plane that just left Iranian Airspace,” Trump tweeted. “We expect him to be home with his family in America very soon.”
Trump later thanked Iran and said he spoke with White via phone when he landed in Zurich.
White, 48, a veteran from California, was sentenced in 2019 to 10 years in an Iranian prison after being convicted of insulting Iran’s supreme leader and posting private information online. Joanne White told The New York Times last year that her son had gone to Iran to visit his girlfriend and that he’d been held in the country since July 2018.
White’s release came two days after the United States deported an Iranian scientist, Sirous Asgari, who was acquitted on charges of trying to steal secret research from Case Western Reserve University.