Hikers Released, Flown To Oman On First Leg Of Trip Home To US - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Hikers Released, Flown To Oman On First Leg Of Trip Home To US

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - The two Americans who were released from prison in Iran today have arrived in Oman for a reunion with family members.

Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal dashed down the stairs from the plane and into the arms of loved ones who were there to greet them.

President Barack Obama is calling the release "wonderful news," and says he's thrilled by it. Bauer and Fattal were released today on bail of $500,000 each -- an arrangement similar to the one that brought freedom last year for Sarah Shourd (shord).

The three were arrested near Iran's border with Iraq in 2009 and accused of spying. They say they were simply hiking.

The release came just minutes before President Barack Obama addressed the U.N. General Assembly. There's no direct evidence that Iran timed it to overshadow the speech, but in the past, Iran has conducted that type of international political stagecraft.

For example, it was just moments after Ronald Reagan's presidential inauguration in 1981 that Iran freed 52 American hostages who had been held for 444 days.

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