Iran likely to put arrested journo, diplomat on trial
TEHRAN: Iran is considering pressing charges against a British embassy staffer, a Newsweek journalist and several reformist leaders, lawyers said on Saturday, as the regime intensifies its crackdown on protests over last month’s presidential election.
The accused include key figures from reformist 1997-2005 presidency of Mohammad Khatami.
They are all held suspected of “acting against national security,” the lawyers said.
Any prosecutions would spark a new downturn in Tehran’s relations with the West. On Friday, European Union governments already called in Iranian envoys across the 27-nation bloc in protest at the detention of British embassy staff.
Lawyer Abolsamad Khorramshahi said he was seeking permission to see detained embassy political analyst Hossein Rassam after being told by his family of the accusations against him.
“I have not met with him yet, but I will ask the judiciary for an appointment,” Khorramshahi told AFP. “I was told by a close relative that he is accused of acting against national security.”
A total of nine local staff at the embassy were initially arrested late last month, but the British government said seven have since been released.