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Former Iran detainees: Publicity helped their case

As family of man jailed in Iran stays quiet, ex-detainees say public pleas helped spur freedom By The Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) ' The family of a former U.S. Marine sentenced to death in Iran is keeping quiet as legal and government officials work behind the scenes for his release.

The low public profile by the family of 28-year-old Amir Hekmati (hehk-MAH'-tee) stands in stark contrast to cases of some other Americans and Canadians of Iranian descent who've been jailed in the country in recent years.

Political maneuvering inside the Iranian government as well as the lack of diplomatic relations and increasing tensions between the U.S. and Iran make it difficult to know which approach works best.

Tehran accuses Hekmati of receiving special training and serving at U.S. military bases in Iraq and Afghanistan before heading to Iran for an alleged intelligence mission. His Michigan family and U.S. officials have denied the charges.

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