American freed by Iran in prisoner exchange

“Our family is complete once again,” Xiyue Wang’s wife, Hua Qu, said in a statement. | Matt Rourke, File/AP Photo

By NAHAL TOOSI

12/07/2019 07:29 AM EST

Updated: 12/07/2019 02:06 PM EST

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An American graduate student detained in Iran for more than three years has been freed after the Trump administration agreed to a prisoner exchange with Tehran.

The release of Xiyue Wang and Masoud Soleimani, an Iranian held in the U.S. on charges of violating American sanctions on Iran, comes at a moment of exceptionally high tensions between Iran and the United States. It’s unlikely to lead to any thaw in the relationship, but it could offer some hope for other Americans imprisoned in Iran.

President Donald Trump announced early Saturday that Wang, who had been held on questionable espionage charges while doing academic research in Iran, had been released. Wang was a fourth-year graduate student in the Department of History at Princeton University.

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