Iran-held U.S. woman returns home

Sarah Shourd comes back to America after over a year in custody

Topics: Iran, Afghanistan, CIA, Iraq, Iraq war, Espionage,

An American woman who was held in Iran for more than 13 months and accused of spying returned Sunday to the United States.

Sarah Shourd arrived at around 6:30 a.m. at Dulles International Airport near Washington, accompanied by her mother and an uncle, according to a statement released by her family and relatives of two other Americans who are still in custody in Iran.

Shourd and her mother, Nora, were on their way to New York for a news conference later Sunday with the mothers of the other detained Americans, Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal, the families said.

Meanwhile, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad also is due to arrive in the city Sunday to attend the U.N. General Assembly.

Shourd, Bauer — her fiance — and Fattal, a friend of the couple, were detained in July 2009 along the Iran-Iraq border. Iran has issued espionage-related indictments, which could bring trials for the two men and proceedings in absentia for Shourd.

The Americans’ families say they were hiking, and if they crossed the border, they did so accidentally.

Shourd was freed Tuesday after officials in Oman — an ally of both Iran and the United States — mediated a $500,000 bail.

She left Oman Saturday for Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and took a commercial flight from there to Dulles because planes to New York were already full of passengers flying in for the General Assembly meeting, the families said.

Before boarding an Oman Air flight at Oman’s international airport, Shourd asked supporters to “extend your prayers” to Bauer and Fattal. Shourd, 32, did not mention her experiences inside Tehran’s notorious Evin Prison or any health problems, which her mother has said include a breast lump and precancerous cervical cells.

She also expressed special gratitude to Oman, which helped secure a bail arrangement that satisfied Iranian authorities and apparently did not violate U.S. economic sanctions against Iran. The source of the bail payment has not been disclosed.

“I’ll always associate your country with the first breath of my freedom, the sweet smell of sandalwood and a chance to stand by the ocean listening to the waves,” she said Saturday.



Earlier in Tehran, Ahmadinejad said he was hopeful the United States would release several Iranians now that Shourd has been freed.

Ahmadinejad has suggested in the past that the three could be traded for Iranians held in the U.S., raising concerns that the Americans were to be used as bargaining chips as the two countries face off over issues like Iran’s disputed nuclear program. In December, Iran released a list of 11 Iranians it says are in U.S. custody.

——

Associated Press writer Adam Schreck contributed to this report from Muscat, Oman.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails
    Burger King Japan

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Burger King's black cheeseburger: Made with squid ink and bamboo charcoal, arguably a symbol of meat's destructive effect on the planet. Only available in Japan.

    Elite Daily/Twitter

    2014's fast food atrocities

    McDonald's Black Burger: Because the laws of competition say that once Burger King introduces a black cheeseburger, it's only a matter of time before McDonald's follows suit. You still don't have to eat it.

    Domino's

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Domino's Specialty Chicken: It's like regular pizza, except instead of a crust, there's fried chicken. The company's marketing officer calls it "one of the most creative, innovative menu items we have ever had” -- brain power put to good use.

    Arby's/Facebook

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Arby's Meat Mountain: The viral off-menu product containing eight different types of meat that, on second read, was probably engineered by Arby's all along. Horrific, regardless.

    KFC

    2014's fast food atrocities

    KFC'S ZINGER DOUBLE DOWN KING: A sandwich made by adding a burger patty to the infamous chicken-instead-of-buns creation can only be described using all caps. NO BUN ALL MEAT. Only available in South Korea.

    Taco Bell

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Taco Bell's Waffle Taco: It took two years for Taco Bell to develop this waffle folded in the shape of a taco, the stand-out star of its new breakfast menu.

    Michele Parente/Twitter

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Krispy Kreme Triple Cheeseburger: Only attendees at the San Diego County Fair were given the opportunity to taste the official version of this donut-hamburger-heart attack combo. The rest of America has reasonable odds of not dropping dead tomorrow.

    Taco Bell

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Taco Bell's Quesarito: A burrito wrapped in a quesadilla inside an enigma. Quarantined to one store in Oklahoma City.

    Pizzagamechangers.com

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Boston Pizza's Pizza Cake: The people's choice winner of a Canadian pizza chain's contest whose real aim, we'd imagine, is to prove that there's no such thing as "too far." Currently in development.

    7-Eleven

    2014's fast food atrocities

    7-Eleven's Doritos Loaded: "For something decadent and artificial by design," wrote one impassioned reviewer, "it only tasted of the latter."

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>