US President Barack Obama on Wednesday met the wife of a Christian pastor who has been jailed in Iran for over two years, vowing to work to win his release.
Obama met the wife of Saeed Abedini during a visit to Boise, Idaho, where the president was selling his vision of a more equal America, unveiled in a State of the Union address on Tuesday.
“The United States is concerned about the unjust detention of several Americans in Iran, including Mr. Abedini,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest.
He said Secretary of State John Kerry spoke with his Iranian counterpart in the last 10 days about securing the release of Abedini, former US Marine Amir Hekmati and Washington Post journalist Jason Rezaian.
“This continues to be a priority for the administration,” said Earnest, who noted that the meeting with Abedini’s wife Naghmeh took place just before the president’s remarks at Boise State University.
Obama appeared at the university to sell his plan for distributive “middle-class economics” — a last push in the twilight years of his presidency.
“I’ve got two years left in office, I’m not going to stop trying,” he told students.
In an address laden with sports metaphors, Obama added, “I don’t need to remind you that big things happen late in the fourth quarter,” beside huge sports banners reading “RELENTLESS” and “DISCIPLINE.”