The United States and Iran began a prisoner exchange through the mediation of Qatar

Anna Kholodnova

The United States and Iran have begun a prisoner exchange brokered by Qatar. As part of the agreement, the US unfroze $6 billion in sanctions-related assets belonging to Tehran.

This is reported by Reuters.

Negotiations on the exchange of prisoners took place in Doha in two different hotels, the parties exchanged messages with the help of Qatari negotiators.

According to the agencyʼs sources, a Qatari plane carrying five US citizens left Tehran for the Qatari city of Doha. Businessmen Siamak Namazi and Emad Sharki, ecologist Morad Tahbaz, and two other unnamed prisoners were released from Iranʼs Evin prison.

According to the information of the Iranian TV channel Press TV, two out of five Iranians imprisoned in the United States landed in Doha. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani said two of the released Iranians would return to Iran, while the other two would remain in the United States at their request. Another released prisoner will join his family in a third country.

According to Reuters sources, $6 billion blocked in South Korea after the strengthening of US sanctions against Iran in 2018 was transferred to accounts in Doha. According to the agreement, Qatar will guarantee that this money will be spent on humanitarian needs.

Representatives of the Republican Party of the USA criticized the agreement with Iran. They claim that US President Joe Biden is actually paying the ransom for US citizens.

  • In 2018, US President Donald Trump withdrew the country from the agreement on Iranʼs nuclear program and introduced new sanctions against the Iranian regime. Since then, the relations between the countries have worsened considerably. In Iran, the USA is called "The Great Satan".