* You knew this was gonna happen: Debka Report
Roxana Saberi’s release part of US-Iran swap?
According toÂ DEBKAfile‘s Iranian sources, US journalist Roxana Saberi was released Tuesday, May 12, as part of an exchange deal under which Washington agreed to free four senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards intelligence officers captured in Irbil, northern Iraq in January 2007. Defined as “diplomats” by Tehran, they ran terror operations and covert arms supplies from Iran then to al Qaeda and Sunni insurgent networks.
Those sources reveal that the Obama administration will also release to Tehran information on the fate of the Iranian diplomat who disappeared in Pakistan four months ago. US and Pakistani officials claimed at the time that he was kidnapped by the Taliban, tortured and executed, while Tehran insisted he was captured – and is still held – by US special forces because of his ties with al Qaeda.
The four Iranian agents captured in Irbil have not yet been freed, but senior Iranian and Iraqi sources say it will happen soon. The date depends on Tehran satisfying Washington’s demand for information on the former FBI agent Robert Levinson, who has never been heard of from the time he disappeared on the Iranian island of Kish in March 2007.
On April 23 this year, Mohammad Hossein Aghasi, the Iranian lawyer the Levinson family hired to trace him said he believes the missing American is alive and held at a secret location in Iran.
Our intelligence sources stress that the Obama administration’s willingness for this kind of swap goes partway toward admitting to Tehran’s charge that Roxana Saberi performed services in Iran for the United States.
After the Tehran court commuted the eight-year sentence against her for spying to two years suspended, her lawyer revealed that part of the Iranian case against her was that she had a copy of a confidential Iranian report on the US war in Iraq which, he said, she had copied “out of curiosity.”