Iran Releases Australian Couple Investigated for Espionage After Flying a Drone Without Permission
Iran has released an Australian couple who spent more than three months in prison in Tehran on spy charges after they reportedly flew a drone without permission. Reuters reports that the couple, Mark Firkin and Jolie King from Perth, returned to Australia after all charges were dropped. Australia’s Foreign Minister Marise Payne confirmed that the release was granted after weeks of “very sensitive negotiations” with Iran. On Saturday, Iran’s official IRIB news agency reported that an Iranian student Reza Dehbashi, who was being held in Australia on charges of exporting American military radar equipment to Iran, has also been released and returned to Iran after 13 months in detention. Dehbashi was awaiting an extradition hearing to be sent to the United States. It is not immediately clear if the releases are connected.