Iran’s Judiciary Dismisses Talks on Prisoner Swap for Jason Rezaian
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Judiciary’s Deputy Chief and Spokesman Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei said there are no talks on an exchange of a Washington Post reporter detained in Iran.
“Nothing has been raised about the issue yet,” Mohseni Ejei said, in reply to a question concerning recent speculations about the exchange of Jason Rezaian, the Post reporter imprisoned in Iran on espionage charges.
The remarks came a couple of days after Speaker of Iran’s Parliament Ali Larijani raised the possibility of prisoner swap with the US, when asked about the release of Rezaian.
Earlier in August, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Consular, Parliamentary and Expatriates’ Affairs Hassan Qashqavi had also rejected media reports that there are plans to exchange the jailed reporter with Iranian prisoners in the US.
“There are no talks on the swap of Jason Rezaian (with Iranian nationals jailed in the US),” Qashqavi said at the time.
Rezaian, a 39-year-old correspondent with dual Iran-US citizenships, along with his wife Yeganeh Salehi, was arrested in Tehran on July 22, 2014 on espionage charges.
Two other American citizens also detained along with them work as freelance photojournalists. Yeganeh Salehi was released on bail in October 2014.
An indictment issued by Tehran’s prosecutor general says Rezaian is charged with “espionage by collecting the country’s decisions on the issues of internal and foreign policy, and cooperation with the hostile governments.”