State Dept Grilled By AP Reporter; Won't Say If Hostage Plane Departed Before Plane Full of Cash Landed

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Associated Press diplomatic reporter Mike Lee grills State Department deputy spokesperson Mark C. Toner if the hostage plane departed before the Iranians received a plane "carrying the method of payment for the $400 million."

"I believe you agreed to take the question from my colleague James Rosen about the timing of the plane carrying the – I won’t say cash; I’ll say just carrying the method of payment for the 400 million," Lee said.

"Did it land in Tehran before or after the plane carrying the prisoners left Tehran for Geneva?" Lee questioned Toner.

"I don’t believe we’ve gotten clarity on that as well either. In terms of the timing, I don’t have it," Toner responded.

Full exchange:

QUESTION: Do you know why the settlement was not reached on the 16th, the same day that the nuclear deal was implemented? What was it that held it up until – the announcement until the 17th, which, as you recall, is the day that the prisoners were released? Do you know?

MR TONER: I don’t know.

QUESTION: And then, yesterday, I believe you agreed to take the question from my colleague James Rosen about the timing of the plane carrying the – I won’t say cash; I’ll say just carrying the method of payment for the 400 million.

MR TONER: Sure.

QUESTION: Did it land in Tehran before or after the plane carrying the prisoners left Tehran for Geneva?

MR TONER: And I don’t believe we’ve gotten clarity on that as well either. In terms of the timing, I don’t have it.

QUESTION: Can you take the question again?

MR TONER: Well, we – the question is --

QUESTION: Do you know, was it --

MR TONER: The question is still taken, I mean, if we haven’t gotten an answer.

QUESTION: Was it – okay. Well, do you know, was there an effort made to find out?

MR TONER: Yes.

QUESTION: Okay. And the answer came back we’re not going to tell you, or the answer was we don’t know, we’re still looking into it?

MR TONER: We’re still looking into it.

QUESTION: So it’s an active question still.

MR TONER: Sure.

QUESTION: Okay.



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