FILE PHOTO: USA and Iranian flags are seen in this illustration taken, September 8, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo
DUBAI (Reuters) -Iran and the United States have reached an agreement to exchange prisoners, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian told state TV on Sunday, adding that he hoped the exchange would take place soon.
“Regarding the issue of prisoner swaps between Iran and the U.S. we have reached an agreement in the recent days and if everything goes well on the U.S. side, I think we will witness a prisoner exchange in a short period,” Amirabdollahian said.
“On our part everything is ready, while the U.S. is currently working on the final technical coordination.”
One of several Americans held in Iran is Siamak Namazi, a businessman with dual U.S.-Iranian citizenship, who was sentenced in 2016 to 10 years in prison for spying and cooperating with the U.S. government.
Emad Sharghi, an Iranian-American businessman was first arrested in 2018 when he was working for a tech investment company, is also jailed in Iran, as is Iranian-American environmentalist Morad Tahbaz, who also holds British citizenship.
Iranian sources told Reuters that two regional countries were involved in the series of indirect talks between Tehran and Washington for the release of prisoners.
For years, Tehran has sought the release of more than a dozen Iranians in the United States, including seven Iranian-American dual nationals, two Iranians with permanent U.S. residency and four Iranian citizens with no legal status in the United States.