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Jason Rezaian leaves Germany, heads for U.S.

By Ed Adamczyk Follow @adamczyk_ed Contact the Author   |   Jan. 22, 2016 at 11:52 AM

LANDSTUHL , Germany, Jan. 22 (UPI) -- Reporter Jason Rezaian, freed from Iran after 18 months detention, left a U.S. military hospital in Landstuhl, Germany, for the United States on Friday.

In a statement released Friday, the Washington Post reporter said, "At some point, I will be ready to discuss my ordeal, but for now, I just want to express my profound appreciation for the tremendous support I have received."

He previously said he was eager to catch up on the events he missed while in Iranian jails, including basketball and the latest Star Wars film. Rezaian and three other Iranian-Americans in Iranian captivity were released last week.

His departure was complicated at the last moment when his wife, Yeganeh Salehi, and mother, Mary, spent several hours in the hallways and waiting rooms of Tehran's airport after learning he would be freed. Salehi was unaware, until the final hour, whether she would join her husband on the flight from Tehran, her inclusion delaying the departure of the plane.

Rezaian's brother, Ali, said in an interview earlier this week, "The Iranians, as they have done all along, continued to manipulate them, continued to try to mess with them, and prevented Yegi [Salehi] from leaving for some period of time, but thanks to the Swiss and thanks to the Americans, she came home with him."

Rezaian spent 545 days in Iranian jails. He was convicted of espionage last year in a trial denounced by his family and friends as a deceptive sham.

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