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Iran Judiciary Says Bail For Two Americans Still Under Review

Shane Bauer (left) and Josh Fattal, at the first session of their trial in Tehran Revolutionary Court in February
Iran's judiciary says it is still considering whether to offer bail to two U.S. nationals detained on spying charges, after President Mahmud Ahmadinejad said the release of the two men was imminent.

Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal were sentenced last month to eight years in prison.

On September 13, Ahmadinejad said they could be be freed "in a couple of days." Their lawyer said they would be released on $500,000 bail each.

Iran's English-language Press TV today quoted an unnamed judiciary official as saying that "the two Americans are going to stay in prison for a bit longer. Reports of their imminent release are wrong."

A judiciary statement quoted by the semi-official Fars news agency said the judiciary is still reviewing a request by defense lawyers that Bauer and Fattal be released on bail.

The two were arrested in July 2009 along the Iraq-Iran border where they say they were hiking in the mountains. A third American, Sarah Shourd, was freed on $500,000 bail last year.

Iran's courts are controlled by the Islamic republic's ruling clerics.

compiled from agency reports