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Iran arrests dual national over British spy links

Aug 16, 2016, 6:39 AM EDT
Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani
(Source: GovernmentZA/flickr)

In yet another effort to stop what its officials describe as “Western Infiltration,” Iran arrested a dual national on charges of spying for the British intelligence services. In the last one year, Iran has detained six other dual nationals in connection with security-related offenses. Without naming the accused, Tehran Prosecutor General Abbas Jafari-Dowlatabadi said that the suspect had been “active in the economic field, related to Iran.”

In April, Iran detained a British-Iranian charity worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe at Tehran’s airport, accusing her of attempting to overthrow the country’s government, reports the BBC. Jafari-Dowlatabadi announced last month that Ratcliffe is being tried by a Revolutionary Court, which is a closed-door tribunal that looks into security-related cases.

Iran doesn’t recognize dual nationality, a reason why foreign diplomats cannot meet the arrested citizens. Iran apparently began to cozy up to the West following a nuclear deal in December after which sanctions over it were lifted, notes Newsweek.

The latest arrest comes a week after Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May discussed the issue of detention of some dual British-Iranian nationals with Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani on a phone call, reports Reuters