Ahmadinejad Hopes For U.S. Gesture After Shourd's Unilateral Release

"Iran's release this week of American hiker Sarah Shourd was a unilateral gesture made without any promise of a quid pro quo, but that doesn't mean Iranian officials wouldn't appreciate a similar act from the United States, Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told state-run television Friday. ""We have no expectations,"" he told IRINN TV. ""But naturally, morally, the expectation would be that the U.S. government would take a step to release a number of Iranians that they took from other countries."" Ahmadinejad said the United States is holding a number of Iranians. ""The expectation is that you would release them,"" he said, noting that Iran has provided the United States with a list of those Iranians imprisoned in the United States. ""They need to be freed and sent back to their families,"" he said. Shourd and her mother, Nora, are planning to address reporters Sunday afternoon in New York City, though they are not expected to respond to questions. During the 410 days that Shourd was held in Iran, ""she never complained that the conditions were hard on her,"" Ahmadinejad said. He said Iran provided all three Americans with ""every comfort we could."""