The Franco-Iranian academic Fariba Adelkhah was imprisoned again for violating house arrest restrictionsan official from the Islamic Republic’s judicial authority said on Sunday.
Your support group based in Paris had announced on Wednesday “with great shock and indignation” his reincarceration, which comes during sensitive talks in Vienna aimed at reviving a nuclear deal in 2015 that offered sanctions relief to Tehran in exchange for restrictions on its atomic program.
“Mrs. Adelkhah has regrettably knowingly violated the limits of house arrest dozens of times,” said Kazem Gharibabadi, deputy head of the judiciary, quoted by Mizan Online, the authority’s news agency. “She has insisted on doing so despite repeated warnings from the judicial authorities. So now, like every other prisoner who has violated the same rules, she has been returned to prison,” he added.
Adelkhah, 62, expert anthropologist in Iran and Shia Islam at the prestigious French university Sciences Po, was arrested on June 5, 2019 at the Tehran airport.
She was sentenced in May 2020 to five years in prison for conspiring against national security, accusations that her supporters have always denounced as absurd. In October of that year, she was placed under house arrest with an electronic bracelet.
The French Foreign Ministry said that reincarceration “can only have negative consequences on the relationship between France and Iran and reduce trust between our two countries.”
The French President, Emmanuel Macron, called the decision Thursday “totally arbitrary” and added that “all of France” was “mobilized for his liberation.”
Gharibabadi insisted that Adelkhah is “a citizen of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” adding that Tehran “strongly condemns the intervention of other countries in (its) judicial process.”
Iran does not recognize dual nationality, thereby denying French consular staff access to Adelkhah.
“It is very unfortunate that the French authorities, issuing hasty statements, make baseless and unfounded comments that are definitely unacceptable.”, dijo Gharibabadi.
The French anthropologist is one of at least a dozen Western citizens believed to be detained in Iran. who, according to human rights groups abroad, are detained for political reasons to obtain concessions from the West.
The talks between Tehran and world powers on the 2015 nuclear deal entered the New Year with positive signs emerging, including the fact that the European Union said on Friday that a deal was still possible.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman last week quoted a “Good progress”, but the French foreign minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, reiterated on Friday his view that the talks were moving “too slowly to be able to reach a result.”
the then president Donald Trump it pulled the United States out of the deal in 2018 and reimposed scathing sanctions, prompting Tehran to begin backtracking on its commitments.
(With information from AFP)