A Lebanese citizen with USA residency detained in Iran since 2015 is expected to return home on Tuesday, a Lebanese official source said, after Lebanon's security chief met officials in Tehran.
Iran has received an amnesty request from Beirut for a Lebanese citizen who was detained in 2015 for "collaborating against the state" but has yet to make a decision on the case, an Iranian judiciary spokesman said on Sunday.
Lebanon's internal security chief Abbas Ibrahim was in Tehran to negotiate Zakka's release on Monday, and he would be freed late on Monday or early on Tuesday and put in Ibrahim's custody, the security official said.
"In this regard, no negotiations have taken place at any level with any person or any government", state TV said.
Shortly after he was detained, he was charged with espionage, sentenced to 10 years in prison and handed a $4.2 million (Dh15.4m) fine. "Extradition of the American-Lebanese spy has been made only at the request and mediation of Hezbollah Secretary-General Seyed Hassan Nasrallah".
Hizbollah is the most powerful armed force in Lebanon as well as being part of the governing coalition in Beirut. State media announced later that year that he had ties to US military and intelligence services and had been detained by the Revolutionary Guards.
A Lebanese national and US resident who is in an Iranial jail after being convicted on charges of espionage for the United States in 2015, is to be released. The Iran government had alleged Zakka of having deep ties with military and intelligence services of the United States, a country that Tehran regards as an arch rival. The U.S. State Department had in 2016 called for his release, saying he was unjustly held.
"We certainly hope these reports are accurate", State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus told reporters when asked about Zakka's imminent release.
Zakka's official Twitter account thanked the Lebanese president and foreign minister for their efforts.
Iran says a number of its nationals are being held unjustly in the West, including at least 56 in the United States, and has asked for their immediate release. His potential release comes as tensions between Iran and the USA remain high after President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew America from Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers. However, U.S. -Iranian tensions have risen anew since U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew Washington from the nuclear pact in May 2018.