Rep. Kildee: Can't Accept Iran Nuke Deal Unless Jailed Marine Is Released
Rep. Dan Kildee (D-Mich.) weighed in on "On The Record" tonight about his efforts in trying to get a former Marine jailed in Iran to be released.
For more than three-and-a-half years, Amir Hekmati has been jailed in Iran’s worst prison after being accused of espionage. However, his family claims that he was just visiting relatives in Iran.
Kildee told Greta Van Susteren that he has confronted President Barack Obama on more than one occasion about trying to get Hekmati home. He added that he will continue to press Obama and the State Department about this.
"We don't want Amir's freedom to be a condition of this nuclear agreement," Kildee stated. "But on the other hand, I as a member of Congress, many other of my colleagues, cannot accept an agreement with Iran on its face, unless Iran releases the political prisoners, the Americans that it holds, particularly Amir Hekmati."
He remarked that it's hard to take any agreement with Iran seriously if they continue to hold innocent people for political purposes.
Kildee noted that Hekmati grew up in his hometown of Flint, Mich., and that he also served the country by being in the Marine Corps.
"Most likely because of that service, [he's] being treated by the Iranian government as a political prisoner," Kildee stated. "He's an innocent man, he's done nothing wrong and he's simply become a pawn in a geopolitical struggle between Iran and the rest of the world."
Kildee told Van Susteren that he's thankful for her bringing attention to this case.
"We know that when the American people speak up, the Iranian government listens," Kildee said. "We want people to use social media, use #freeamirnow to express themselves on this."
Watch the full interview above from "On The Record."