Sarah Shourd, One of Three Americans Held in Iran, Released

Sarah Shourd, One of Three Americans Held in Iran Released

Sarah Shourd, One of Three Americans Held in Iran Released

Sarah Shourd, one of three Americans being held in Iran, was released Tuesday morning after posting a bail of $500,000.  Shourd and two others, Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal, were arrested by Iranian officers over a year ago when the three were hiking along the Iraq-Iran border and crossed into Iran.  Iranian officials have charged all three with espionage.  Bauer and Shourd are engaged to be married.

Shourd’s family applauded Iranian authorities for releasing their daughter, though they still implore Iran to release the other two Americans in custody.  Shourd was released after Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad intervened due to the woman having pressing medical issues including precancerous cervical cells and a lump in her breast.

It is unclear who posted bail for the woman.  What is known is that her family was unable to come up with the required money and the U.S. government has said they did not post the money.  Due to sanctions on Iran, the transfer of money was a complicated and involved process.  U.N. sanctions do not allow for the foreign transfer of funds to the main state banks in Iran, making it unlikely that the entity posting the bail money will ever be identified publicly.

Shourd’s release came after days of differing reports over whether she would be released.  While the Iranian President had intervened, the judge on the case stepped in and said that he, and not the President, had control over the case.  The judge eventually set the record high bail enabling Shourd to be released.

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