February 4, 2023

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Iran executes British Iranian for spying

Iran on Saturday announced the death sentence of an Iranian-British man sentenced to death for spying for British intelligence, sparking outrage from Western countries and NGOs.

Former senior Iranian Defense Ministry official Alireza Akbari, 61, was hanged after being sentenced to death by the United Kingdom for ‘corruption on earth and undermining the country’s internal and external security’.

Three days ago Mizan Online announced the death sentence of Alireza Akbari, an Iranian agency who was a “top spy” for the British “Secret Intelligence Service” (SIS), also known as MI6.

The United Kingdom, like the United States, had urged Iran not to carry out the execution of the Iranian-British man, who had been detained for more than two years.

In a tweet, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak condemned the “callous and cowardly” condemnation.

Its diplomatic chief, James Wise, pointed out that London would summon Iranian officials and that this “barbaric act” would “not go unanswered”. He then announced sanctions against Iran’s Attorney General, Mohammad Jafar Montazeri.

The US said it was “appalled” by the execution. “Arbitrary detentions, forced confessions, and politically motivated executions are completely unacceptable and must be stopped,” the State Department said.

– “Barbarism” –

“The execution of Alireza Akbari was a cruel and barbaric act (…),” French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted.

In Tehran, the Foreign Office summoned the British ambassador and insisted that the “British government must take responsibility for making unusual contacts” that represented an “attack on the country’s national security”.

During the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988), Alireza Akbari was, in particular, Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Head of a Division of the Ministerial Research Center, and Adviser to the Commander of the Navy, the official IRNA agency reported. .

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According to IRNA, he was arrested between March 2019 and March 2020. Mizan Online alleged that he was paid more than two million dollars for his services.

Iran regularly announces arrests of foreign intelligence services. Four Iranians accused of collaborating with Israeli intelligence were executed in early December.

According to Amnesty International, Iran has the highest number of executions outside of China.

US Ambassador Vedant Patel on Friday expressed his country’s “strong concerns” after reports that Akbari was “drugged, tortured in police custody, interrogated for thousands of hours and coerced into making false confessions”.

– Sanctions against defenders? –

Iranian media recently obtained access to a video of Alireza Akbari’s confession via MI6.

But human rights activists continue to accuse Iran of coercing prisoners into giving false confessions.

On Twitter, Amnesty International condemned the execution and called on the British government to “thoroughly investigate” allegations of torture against Alireza Akbari.

On Twitter, prominent Iranian lawyer Seyed Dehghan called the execution “political”, citing possible moves by London and the European Union (EU) to sanction Iran’s ideological army, the Revolutionary Guards, for their role in quelling protests sparked by the September 16 death. of Mahza Amini.

Kurd, a 22-year-old Iranian, was arrested by paramilitary police in Tehran three days ago for violating the Islamic Republic’s strict dress code for women.

Mahmoud Amiri-Moghadam, director of the Oslo-based Iran Human Rights Group, said, “The fact that Iran carried out the executions shows that it is part of Iran’s hostage policy, as the UK and EU are considering adding the Revolutionary Guards to the terrorist list”.

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