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US State Department spokesman rejects claims on agreeing to prisoner swap with Iran

MOSCOW: US State Department spokesman Ned Price rejected on Sunday media reports alleging that Washington and Tehran have agreed to a prisoner swap.

Earlier in the day, Lebanese Al Mayadeen broadcaster reported that the two countries might exchange prisoners as part of a possible deal, noting that the agreement may also envision the US unfreezing $7 billion of Iran’s assets.

“Reports that a prisoner swap deal has been reached are not true. As we have said, we always raise the cases of Americans detained or missing in Iran. We will not stop until we are able to reunite them with their families,” Price said.

Early this year, Tehran expressed its readiness for a prisoner swap with the United States during President Joe Biden’s term. The remark followed the arrest of Iranian political scientist and scholar Kaveh Lotfolah Afrasiabi by the FBI at his home in Massachusetts on charges of being an “unregistered agent” of the Islamic Republic.

Commenting on Iran’s proposal for a prisoner exchange in March, US State Department Deputy Spokesperson Jalina Porter said that Washington was open to discussing the issue.

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