Iran jails President Hassan Rouhani's brother

Barsaba Taglieri
Luglio 17, 2017

The deputy judiciary chief, Mr Ejehi, also said on Sunday that a U.S. citizen accused of "infiltration" in Iran had been sentenced to 10 years in prison.

A graduate student in history Xiyue Wang vanished from Iran where he was doing research for a doctoral thesis.There had been rumors of his arrest, but the announcement on Sunday from Iran was the first official confirmation.

An Iranian court has sentenced a Chinese-American scholar to 10 years in prison on "infiltration" charges, Iran's judicial spokesman said Sunday.

"The Iranian regime continues to detain USA citizens and other foreigners on fabricated national-security related changes", a State Department official said in an emailed statement Sunday.

Wang was arrested last August as he tried to leave the country, according to the judiciary's news agency.

Ejeie said the man had appealed his conviction.

The spokesman did not name the person or give details on when the sentence was passed but said the person was a citizen of the United States and an unnamed country other than Iran. He is now facing 10 years in prison.

Brother of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani Hossein Fereydoon, the arrested on suspicion of financial crimes. An unknown number of Iranians holding European passports are also believed in custody in Iran; among them are Britons, Austrians and French citizens. According to the Iranian government, he allegedly recorded about 4,500 pages of digital documents.

Mr Ejehi may also have been referring to Iranian-American art gallery manager Karan Vafadari, who was detained along with his Iranian wife past year.

Washington also requires the cooperation of Tehran in the case of Robert Levinson, a former Federal Bureau of Investigation agent, missing in Iran since 2007.

An article posted on Mizan Online, a website affiliated with Iran's judiciary, said 37-year-old Wang was born in Beijing and is a dual national of the United States and China. Princeton is working with his family and the US government to secure Wang's release, it said. "All US citizens, especially dual nationals considering travel to Iran, should carefully read our latest travel warning."‎.

It may be recalled that Iran has a long history of imprisoning people without actually revealing their identities.

Two nationals, an iranian-american businessman Siamak Namazi and his father Mohammad Bagher Namazi, were sentenced in October 2016 with four others to ten years in prison for "espionage" in favor of Washington.

He lives in Washington DC and has done work for the USA government.

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