Saturday, January 16, 2016

Obama: Pardons for Prisoner Exchange

It is reported that President Obama has granted "pardons" to 68 year old Bahram Mechanic and his co-defendants, Khosrow Afghahi and Tooray Faridi. Four other Iranians may be involved in the grants and charges may have been dropped against 4 to 14 others (reports vary). Some of the grant recipients have been tried and convicted. Others have not, so those clemency grants are "preemptive" in nature (a phrase more popular in media during the Bush administration).

Mechanic was arrested for violating "trade restrictions" when he sent "electronic parts from the U.S. to a company he owned in Iran." Now,it is also believed that the "pardons" are part of a "prisoner exchange" that was announced this morning. It may all result in at least four Americans being released by Iran.

The American prisoners include Jason Rezaian (Washington Post correspondent), Amir Hekmati (a US Marine  charged with spying), Saeed Abedini (a Christian who gathered a Bible study group) and businessman Siamak Namazi. There is also talk that two others may be released as well.

The White House is not providing comment to reporters at present.

See stories here. and here. and here.

* This post is developing

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