US & Canada

US hikers jailed for spying by Iran get married

Shane Bauer and Sarah Shourd, file image from Iran, May 2010
Image caption Shane Bauer proposed to Sarah Shourd while the couple were in custody

Two US hikers who were held in Iran as alleged spies have got married.

Shane Bauer and Sarah Shourd were held in 2009 after allegedly straying over the border from Iraq during a walking holiday. They got engaged in prison, using a shirt thread as a ring.

Their friend Josh Fattal, who was held with them, acted as best man at the ceremony in California.

Iran freed Ms Shourd on bail after 14 months, but the two men were held until September 2011.

The couple are now said to be on their honeymoon, although the destination has not been disclosed.

In a statement posted on the Free the Hikers Facebook page, Ms Shourd said: "Now that this day has come, all I can do is close my eyes and fill with gratitude, for our freedom, for the love of so many generous people around the world, and for the very soil under my feet."

"The day Shane proposed to Sarah in prison gave us all hope for the future," Mr Fattal said in a statement.

Mr Bauer said: "Becoming engaged to Sarah while we were in captivity allowed me to dream of a future that was not only secure, but also beautiful."

The three friends said that if they had crossed into Iran, it had been by accident, but all three were sentenced to eight years in prison for spying and illegally entering the country.

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