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US Releases 1 of 10 Iranian Nationals Held in Iraq


U.S. authorities have released one of about 10 Iranian citizens held by U.S. forces in Iraq.

U.S. and Iranian authorities say the Iranian man had been detained since July 2004.

An Iranian state news agency named the man as Heydar Alavi and says he was captured by U.S. forces in northern Iraq. It says he was handed over to the Iraqi presidential office Tuesday.

U.S. authorities in Iraq freed nine Iranian prisoners last month and said about 10 other Iranians remained in custody.

Iran says some of the detainees are diplomats, while the U.S. military says they were providing support to Shi'ite militants in Iraq.

The U.S. Defense Department said in a report Tuesday Iran continued to train and arm Iraqi Shi'ite militias in the past three months, even as violence in Iraq fell significantly.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.

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