"We thank our Swiss partners for their assistance in negotiating Mr Wang's release with Iran".
Iranian security forces may have killed as many as 1,000 citizens, including at least 12 children, during the latest anti-government protests in Iran said U.S. Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook on Thursday.
Wang's wife, Hua Qu, expressed gratitude for his return and said, "Our family is complete once again". "Thank you to Iran on a very fair negotiation", the United States president wrote on his Twitter page.
He was a student of late-19th- and early-20th-century history of Eurasia, and was in Iran "solely for the objective of studying Farsi and doing scholarly research in connection with his Ph.D. dissertation", according to the Princeton University website.
Sepehrifar said video evidence obtained by human rights groups showed Iranian forces using excessive force to disperse the protesters "way beyond what could be considered permissible under worldwide norm [s]". U.S. law enforcement arrested the Iranian stem cell scientist in fall 2018 upon his landing in Chicago, according to Iran's state-run Press TV.
Crushing sanctions imposed by President Donald Trump past year, following the unilateral withdrawal from Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers, have left Iran facing widespread economic discontent. There also have been a series of attacks across the Mideast that the USA blames on Iran. He said the swap showed the United States and Iran "can make a deal together".
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"I hope, pray, and expect that this is not a one-time trade but the beginning of an expedited process that will bring my family home soon", Babak Namazi, Siamak's brother, said in a statement. Iranian leaders have repeatedly blamed United States sanctions for the country's humanitarian woes, and Saturday's exchange in all likelihood took place despite the pressure campaign, not because of it. Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has ruled out direct talks between the nations.
Nizar Zakka, a Lebanese businessman resident in the United States who was freed in June after four years in prison in Iran, told Reuters he was the first to know of the release and had told Wang's mother and wife.
Pregnant at the time of her arrest, she was sentenced to 27 months but released after already serving time in custody.
He was accused of espionage, and was locked up for 10 years in Tehran's Evin prison.
The arch-enemies came to the brink of military confrontation in June this year when Iran downed a United States drone and Trump ordered retaliatory strikes before cancelling them at the last minute.
"But several other Americans remain unjustly detained in Iran and they should be released too", he cautioned. "But we are learning more and more about how the Iranian regime treats its own people", he added.
Hook said at least 7,000 protesters have been detained in a network of prisons that the Trump administration intends to sanction, adding that Secretary of State Michael Pompeo has determined they are responsible for gross human rights violations.
He said Washington will continue to work to free all Americans "wrongfully held captive overseas" and thanked Switzerland for help to secure Wang's release.