Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Journalist Roxana Saberi Freed from Iranian Prison, Reunited with Her Family and Set to Go Back Home to the U.S.

12 May 2009   12:43am, Manila time

An Iranian court has cut short the eight-year prison sentence of erstwhile jailed female journalist Roxana Saberi  and ordered her freed on a suspended two-year sentence.  

This was the breakthrough news announced to the world by her lawyer, Saleh Nikbakht, through Associated Press.  Roxana was immediately reunited with her parents, Reza and Akiko Saberi, who flew from the United States to Iran several weeks ago to personally plead for the release of their daughter. 

Friends and neighbors of Saberi in Fargo, North Dakota, rejoiced upon hearing news of her release. They are excited to welcome her once she returns with her parents to the United States within a few days.

The thirty-two year old Roxana Saberi who holds dual Iranian-American citizenship was in jail for four months.  She was convicted of spying for the United States.  Recently, she mounted a defiant hunger strike but had to end it after two weeks for health reasons. Here's an MSNBC video on Roxana Saberi:

Here's more information on her release from AP and from MSNBC.

Saberi's release is an auspicious moment for US-Iran relations and may indicate a willingness on the part of the Iranian government to explore a possible thawing of relationship between the two countries in response to overtures by the Obama administration.

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