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Iraqi FM, Iran envoy discuss Americans arrest

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The Iraqi foreign minister has met with Iran’s ambassador to inquire on the state of the three Americans arrested by Iranian board guards, a report says.

In a Saturday statement, the Iraqi Foreign Ministry announced that Hoshyar Zebari had asked Iran’s ambassador in Baghdad, Hassan Kazemi-Qomi, to provide information on the three US citizens.

According to the Iraqi Foreign Ministry, Zebari received Kazemi-Qomi on Thursday at his office in central Baghdad.

“[Zebari] mentioned the subject of the Iranian border authorities arresting three American citizens in Marivan and requested information and data about the circumstances of their arrests,” the statement said.

On August 1, an Iraqi Kurdish security official said that three arrested individuals were American tourists visiting Ahmed Awa area in the province of Sulaimaniyah

The official also said that they had crossed the border from Iraq’s Kurdistan region into Iran because they had little knowledge of the area.

According to the official, the three were part of four-member group that entered the Iraqi autonomous region on July 28.

Iranian forces detained Shane Bauer, Josh Fattal and Sarah Shourd, on July 30 at the Ahmed Awa resort, some 150 km east of the Iraqi city of Sulaimaniyah. The fourth member, Shon Meckfessel, apparently stayed behind because of a cold.

Iran’s security officials have also confirmed the arrest of three Americans on charges of “illegal entry” in the Malakh- Khur border area of the Western Iranian city of Marivan.

This is while Voices of Iraq has reported that the three Americans were CIA agents, citing comments by Colonel Anwar Haj Omar of the northern Iraq police force.

Reports indicate that since their arrest, the US Interest Section at the Swiss Embassy in Tehran has been trying to arrange a meeting with them.

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