Iran releases political prisoners
September 19, 2013 10:10 AM

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran released a dozen prominent political prisoners, including a human rights lawyer who defended opposition activists and was imprisoned for three years, activists, media and the lawyer’s husband said Wednesday.

The release of lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh and the other prisoners comes ahead of a visit next week by Iran’s new president to New York to speak at the United Nations.

President Hasan Rouhani has said he hopes to usher in a new era of “increased openness” for the Islamic Republic at home and abroad.

The semi-official ISNA news agency and opposition websites reported the release of the prisoners, who had been held on security charges following Iran’s disputed 2009 election.

Among them is Mohsen Aminzadeh, who was deputy foreign minister during the administration of reform President Mohammad Khatami.

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