Iran daily: Washington Post journalist Rezaian charged after 4+ months in prison

The Washington Post’s Iranian-American journalist Jason Rezaian (R) and his Iranian wife Yeganeh Salehi, who works for the UAE newspaper National, during a press conference in Tehran on September 10, 2013.

Jason Rezaian, the Washington Post correspondent in Iran, has been officially charged after more than four months in prison, according to the Post.

“A source familiar with the case” said the specific charges were not immediately clear, at least to those who were not present in the courtroom. The hearing lasted 10 hours.

On Thursday, Iranian authorities said that Rezaian’s detention was being extended to mid-January because the investigation against him is continuing.

Rezaian, an Iranian-American national, was seized July 22 with his wife Yeganeh Salehi — a journalist for the Gulf-based The National — and two other people who were soon released. Salehi was freed on bail in early October.

It could take up to a month for a trial date to be set. At that point, Rezaian’s attorney might be permitted to review them and speak with the journalist.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said in a statement on Sunday that the “Iranian government continues to deny our repeated requests for Consular Access to Jason by our Protecting Power, the Swiss, so we are unable to check on his condition or ensure adequate legal representation”:

Jason poses no threat to the Iranian government or to Iran’s national security. We call on the Iranian government to drop any and all charges against Jason and release him immediately so that he can be reunited with his family.

High-level Iranian officials have repeatedly said that Rezaian is being investigated in according with the Islamic Republic’s laws and judicial system. Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani insisted in October, “There should be no doubt that we don’t want to send anybody to jail with no good reason…I hope that this will come to an end and be concluded as soon as possible.”

Mohammad Javad Larijani, a high-level judiciary official and the Speaker’s brother, repeated earlier this week that he hoped the case would be concluded “as soon as possible….Let us hope that this fiasco will end on good terms.”

By EA WorldView


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