the WHITE HOUSEPresident Barack Obama

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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

Statement by the Press Secretary on the Three American Hikers Detained in Iran

The United States remains deeply concerned by the case of three American hikers, Shane Bauer, Josh Fattal, and Sarah Shourd, who have been detained in Iran without charge or access to legal representation since July 2009. While we welcome the decision by the Iranian authorities to allow Shane, Sarah and Josh to receive another Swiss consular visit at long last, we were deeply alarmed to learn from the families today of their physical and emotional state of health. We fear their well-being will suffer even more unless their case is resolved without delay. We strongly believe these urgent developments are additional reasons for the government of Iran to release them immediately.

These three innocent Americans have been in detention in Iran for almost nine months without formal charges or access to legal representation as stipulated in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. There is absolutely no justification for their detention, and they should be released without further delay.

As always, we urgently call on the Islamic Republic of Iran to resolve the cases of all missing and detained American citizens in Iran, including Robert Levinson who has been missing in Iran since March 2007.