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Iran Says It Will Release 1 of 3 Jailed Americans on Saturday


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Fox News:

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran announced Thursday that Sarah Shourd, one of the three Americans jailed for more than a year, will be released Saturday to mark the end of Islamic holy month of Ramadan.

Spokesman for the Iranian Ambassador to the United Nations tells Fox News that the American hiker will be released "very soon."

The imprisonment of the Americans has deepened tensions between the U.S. and Iran, a relationship already strained over Washington's suspicions that Tehran is trying to manufacture nuclear weapons -- something Iran denies.

The Culture Ministry sent a text message to reporters telling them to come to a Tehran hotel on Saturday morning to witness the release. The site is the same one where the three were allowed the only meeting with their mothers since they were detained in July 2009.

Iran claims they illegally crossed the border from Iraq's northern Kurdish region and had threatened to put the three on trial for spying. Their families say they were hiking in the largely peaceful region of Iraq and that if they crossed the border, it was accidental.

"Offering congratulations on Eid al-Fitr," the ministry text message said, referring to the feast that marks the end of Ramadan.

"The release of one of the detained Americans will be Saturday at 9 a.m. at the Estaghlal hotel."

The Iranian message gave no other details about who would be freed. But Sarah Shourd, 31, has told her mother she has serious medical problems. Shane Bauer, 27, and Josh Fattal, 27, also are being held.

Good news, if true-but what does Iran get in exchange?
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