Swiss seek to visit Americans detained in Iran

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The Swiss embassy in Tehran is seeking permission to visit three US citizens arrested on 31 July for crossing into the country from Iraq.

Tehran -- The Swiss embassy in Tehran is seeking permission to visit three US citizens arrested on 31 July for crossing into the country from Iraq, the ISNA news agency reported on Saturday.

Three American tourists, Shane Bauer, Josh Fattal and Sarah Shourd, were arrested while backpacking through mountains on the Iraq-Iran border.

Iran alleges the trio illegally crossed the border from Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region.

Washington does not have diplomatic ties with the Islamic republic and Switzerland represents its interests in Tehran.

Washington also has been working through its embassy in Baghdad for the release of the three Americans.

Beshro Ahmed, media advisor for general security in Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region, said last week that the three were warned on the Iraqi side not to hike in the mountains because of the proximity of the border with Iran, which is not clearly marked.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari told AFP on Saturday he met Iranian Ambassador Hassan Kazemi Qomi midweek to ask for information on the fate of the three US hikers.

AFP / Expatica

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