UAE paper urges release of its reporter in Iran

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The editor of a newspaper in the United Arab Emirates expressed hope Thursday that its correspondent in Iran detained last month on unspecified charges will soon be released.

Yeganeh Salehi was working as a foreign correspondent for the Abu Dhabi-based daily The National when she was detained on July 22 alongside her husband, Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian. Two photojournalists who have not been identified were also taken into custody.

The National’s editor-in-chief, Mohammed al-Otaiba, said in a front-page article that the paper does not believe Salehi’s reports could be construed as anti-Iranian and did not deal with sensitive security matters.

Calling Salehi a “highly valued” correspondent, al-Otaiba said her reports were at times facilitated by the Iranian government and “provided notable insights into the country, helping explain Iran to its neighbors in the Gulf.”

“We sincerely hope that Yeganeh is being well-treated and that she is released soon,” he wrote. “We want her back doing what she does so well: reporting on a country that she loves.”

The National is an English-language newspaper owned by the government of Abu Dhabi, the capital of the seven-state UAE federation. Salehi has worked regularly for the paper since January.

Iranian officials have not commented publicly on the specific reasons for the arrests or what charges the detainees might face.

Salehi is an Iranian citizen who has applied for U.S. permanent residency. Rezaian holds both American and Iranian citizenship. Iran does not recognize dual nationality for its citizens.

The Washington Post has urged Tehran to release its correspondent and the other detained journalists.

By The Associated Press


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