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U.S. national Baquer Namazi, 85, leaves Iran after more than 6 years in “illegal” detention

An 85-year-old Iranian-American held by Iran over internationally criticized spying charges left the country Wednesday for Oman, officials said, after increasing pressure to free him amid his struggles with poor health. His 51-year-old son, however, remains in Iran, currently on furlough from prison.

Baquer Namazi is the first American to be freed by Iran since President Joe Biden took office, even as talks over Tehran’s tattered nuclear deal with world powers have stalled. Iran has long used detained Westerners or those with ties abroad as bargaining chips in negotiations.

The state-run IRNA news agency published video of Namazi boarding a Royal Oman air force jet, apparently in Tehran. It said Namazi left the country Wednesday.

Read More: CBS