Iranian Official: American Hiker Sarah Shourd Will Be Released

VIDEO: Iran has announced its intention to release Sarah Shourd, but not her friends.
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Sarah Shourd, one of the three American hikers who have been detained in Iran for more than a year, will be released "very soon," an Iranian official told ABC News today.

Earlier today, an Iranian official texted journalists, alerting them that one of detained hikers would be released Saturday to mark the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

"Offering congratulations on Eid al-Fitr," an official in the Iranian culture ministry told reporters by text message, referring to the celebration at the end of Ramadan, according to The Associated Press. "The release of one of the detained Americans will be at Saturday, 9 a.m. at the Estaghlal hotel."

Saturday is also the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks.

An official at the Iranian Mission to the U.N. told ABC News' Christiane Amanpour that the hiker to be released would be Shourd.

Iran's U.N. Mission later made it official by issuing a statement saying, "I would like to confirm that Iran will be releasing Sarah Shourd (an American hiker) very soon."

Reports emerged as early as May that Shourd was suffering from depression and a serious gynecological condition. Today a spokesman for Shourd's family confirmed the 32-year-old had found a lump in her breast. It is not known if the lump is cancerous.

Shourd has been held in Iran along with American hikers Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal since they were captured by Iranian authorities in July 2009 after allegedly wandering over the Iraq-Iran border.

"We have seen the news reports and are urgently seeking further information," the hikers' mothers said in a statement posted on Facebook earlier today. "We hope and pray that the reports are true and that this signals the end of all three of our children's long and difficult detention. Shane, Sarah and Josh are all innocent and we continue to call for their immediate release, so that they can return home together and be reunited with our families."

Just minutes later, the administrator of the Facebook account, a "friend or family" of the hikers, commented on the post and said, "I AM PRAYING!!!! GOD - THANK YOU!!!"

In response to the report, an attorney for the hikers, Masoud Shafie, released a statement in which he said the Shourd's health was deteriorating in captivity.

"I gave a letter to Tehran investigators and I warned about Sarah's situation and her health is very weak. They can hold them for up to a year for the investigation, but not more than a year if they haven't been given a proper trial," Shafie told ABC News through a translator. "I spoke to the investigator yesterday and notified them of this and God willing on Saturday Sarah will be released and hopefully also the other two.

"We hope. Nothing is certain until it actually happens, but God willing they will be released," he said.

On Aug. 10, the mothers made another open plea to Iran's leaders, invoking the sacred time of Ramadan and Shourd's "serious medical condition."

"Sarah has a serious medical condition and we are gravely concerned for her physical and emotional welfare, for which Iran's leaders are responsible. We urgently call on the Iranian authorities to end her isolation and provide her with adequate care," the mothers said in a statement on a website dedicated to the hikers' release.

U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner was unable to confirm the reports and said, "We don't know, frankly, what Iran is contemplating at this point.

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