Diplomacy

Iran Blasts Sweden for Granting Citizenship to Scientist under Death Sentence

Iran has rebuked Sweden for granting citizenship to a scientist it sentenced to death, in a process the United Nations has criticized as unfair, the Associated Press reported Tuesday.

According to Iranian media reports, the foreign ministry summoned Swedish Ambassador Helena Sangeland to protest the granting of Swedish citizenship to Ahmadreza Djalali, an academic and resident of Sweden, who was sentenced to death last October for spying for Israel. Iran’s foreign ministry said that the move was “unconventional, question-posing and unfriendly.”

“Rights groups,” the AP reported, “have condemned Djalali’s detention, saying it follows a pattern of Iran detaining dual nationals and expatriates indefinitely without due process.”

In December, Iran broadcast what it called Djalali’s “confession.” Amnesty International condemned the verdict, calling it “not only a shocking assault on the right to a fair trial but was also in utter disregard for Ahmadreza Djalali’s right to life.”

United Nations experts have described Djalali’s trial as having been “marred by numerous reports of due process and fair trial violations.”

A document attributed to Djalali claimed that he was prosecuted for refusing to spy for Iran and that he made the confession only after being subjected to “multiple psychological and physical tortures.”

[Photo: IranWire / YouTube ]