US President Donald Trump on Thursday (local time) thanked Iran for releasing the American hostage Michael White, saying that, ‘it shows a deal is possible’.
“I just got off the phone with former American hostage Michael White, who is now in Zurich after being released from Iran. He will be on a US plane shortly, and is coming home…” Trump tweeted.
“…to the United States! We have now brought more than 40 American hostages and detainees back home since I took office. Thank you to Iran, it shows a deal is possible!” he added.
On the issue of the prisoner swap, Foreign Minister of Iran Javad Zarif said that Iranian hostages held in–and on behalf of–the US should come home.
“Pleased that Dr Majid Taheri and Mr White will soon be joining their families. Prof. Sirous Asgari was happily reunited with his family on Weds. This can happen for all prisoners. No need for cherry-picking. Iranian hostages held in–and on behalf of–the US should come home,” Zarif tweeted.
Pleased that Dr. Majid Taheri and Mr. White will soon be joining their families.
Prof. Sirous Asgari was happily reunited with his family on Weds.
This can happen for all prisoners. No need for cherry picking.
Iranian hostages held in—and on behalf of—the US should come home.
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) June 4, 2020
Zarif had said prisoner swap between the US and Iran has no problem and “we do not need holding negotiations”, adding that prisoner swap will be made with coordination of the US’ Interests Section in Tehran, IRNA reported.
On Wednesday, Iranian scientist Sirous Asgari who was arrested by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was released.
This prisoner’s swap comes at a time when the tensions between the two countries have escalated after Trump pursued a “maximum pressure” campaign against Tehran imposing sanctions. In 2018, Trump administration unilaterally withdrew from 2015 Iran nuclear deal known as (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) JCPOA, signed between US, UK, France, Russia, China, Germany and EU and Iran.