Iran frees tourist convicted of snapping ships

Iran has pardoned and released a French tourist convicted of taking photos of ships in the Persian Gulf, the French Foreign Ministry said Sunday. Stephane Lherbier, arrested along with a German national in November 2005, was released Sunday and was delivered to the French Embassy in Teheran, Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy said in a statement. The statement said Lherbier was freed after being pardoned by Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Douste-Blazy welcomed the release and expressed hope that the German, Donald Klein, would also be released in the coming days. The two were arrested for straying into Iran's territorial waters during a sailing trip off the coast of neighboring United Arab Emirates.