The two Americans arrested two years ago while hiking along the Iran-Iraq border and then imprisoned on espionage charges have been released—according to the Iranian state-run media. There has not yet been any confirmation that the pair have actually left the prison they have been held in, but U.S. officials seem confident they are on their way out.
Masoud Shafiei, the lawyer acting on behalf of 29-year-olds Shane M. Bauer and Joshua F. Fattal, has previously told the AP the pair would be handed over to Swiss diplomats and (amidst political unrest in his country) Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been promising for the past week that they would be freed “in a couple of days.” Last week it seemed like they would be released on $500,000 bails (as a third American hiker, Sarah Shourd, was last September). That still appears to be the case.
The three hikers were arrested in 2009 after apparently, they say mistakenly, walking over an unmarked border between Iraqi Kurdistan and Iran. Iran claimed the Americans are spies, but they have maintained their innocence.