Three Americans straying into Iran under arrest

August 5, 2009

TEHRAN – Three Americans, who have strayed into Iran, are under arrest, a local Iranian official announced on Tuesday.

Kordestan Province deputy governor Iraj Hassanzadeh said that the three aliens, who claim are from the U.S., were detained for illegal entry to Iran.
The two men and one woman with Iraqi and Syrian visas, whose identities are not clear yet, were arrested on Friday evening at the Malakh-Khor border point near the town of Marivan, Hassanzadeh told the Mehr News Agency.
However, based on the investigations conducted and the documents they hold they reside in the U.S., he added.
The local official said there is still no information about the reasons behind their illegal entry.
Hassanzadeh said anyone who crossed the border illegally would be arrested.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Monday that she was ""concerned"" about three Americans, saying Washington had not received any information from Iran about their fate since they crossed into the country from northern Iraq on Friday.
""Obviously, we are concerned,"" Clinton told reporters at the State Department. ""We want this matter brought to a resolution as soon as possible. And we call on the Iranian government to help us determine the whereabouts of the three missing Americans and return them as quickly as possible.""
Iran has questioned reports that these people were some hikers who wandered across the border by mistake.