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Iranian-American Scholar Freed from Tehran Jail

Iran has released Iranian-American social scientist Kian Tajbakhsh, who had been held in Tehran's Evin prison since May.

The official IRNA news agency reports that Tajbakhsh was freed late Wednesday after paying bail of about $110,000. The Iranian-American scholar is a consultant to the U.S.-based Soros Foundation's Open Society Institute. He is not permitted to leave Iran until he receives approval from a judge.

The institute Thursday welcomed the scholar's release and expressed hope that his ordeal has come to a close.

Tajbakhsh is the third Iranian-American to be freed in Iran in recent weeks. One of the four who had been detained on security-related charges remains in custody. Peace activist Ali Shakeri is still in detention in Iran.

Iranian-American journalist Parnaz Azima left Iran Tuesday, also after paying bail of about $550,000. She had been prevented from leaving the country for eight months. Azima is a correspondent for Radio Farda, which is a Persian language U.S. news service affiliated with Radio Free Europe-Radio Liberty and Voice of America.

Earlier this month, Iranian-American academic Haleh Esfandiari returned to the United States following her release on bail. She spent three months in Evin Prison.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.