The two American hikers who were jailed in 2009 for illegally crossing into Iran have been released, ending a two-year saga that culminated last week with an announcement, and then a retraction, that they would go free. Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer, both 29, left Tehran's Evin Prison Wednesday in diplomatic cars after posting $500,000 bail. They will next travel to Muscat, the capital of Oman, to receive medical checkups before returning to the United States. Bauer and Fattal were arrested in 2009 with fellow hiker Sarah Shourd when they strayed over Iran's unmarked border while hiking to a waterfall in Iraqi Kurdistan. Shourd was freed last year on medical grounds. Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced last week that the hikers would soon go free, but was contradicted the next day when Iran's judiciary questioned Ahmadinejad's authority to grant the release.
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