UAE pardons British academic jailed for life for being 'MI6 spy'
Matthew Hedges, the British PhD student jailed for life for spying in the UAE, has been pardoned "with immediate effect" as part of the country's National Day clemency tradition.
An official said he would be free to leave the country once the formalities of the presidential pardon had been seen to.
Mr Hedges's wife Daniela Tejada, who has lobbied for his release, said she "can't wait" to have her husband back home. She said: "The presidential pardon for Matt is the best news we could have received. Our six-plus months of nightmare are finally over and to say we are elated is an understatement."
But at the same time of announcing his release, the Emirati government claimed to have a video which shows Mr Hedges admitting he was a member of MI6.