Iran Releases Iranian-American Detainee

A02041853.jpgIran has released Kian Tajbakhsh, an Iranian-American arrested on charges of harming national security earlier this year. Kian Tajbakhsh, an urban planning consultant with the Soros Foundation’s Open Society Institute, was one of four Iranian-Americans charged with endangering national security.

Yet, Iranian officials said on Wednesday that Kian Tajbakhsh, an Iranian-American arrested on charges of harming national security earlier this year, would not be allowed to leave the country after he is released on bail.

“Kian Tajbakhsh was released from prison on bail,” the office of the spokesman of Iran’s judiciary said late Wednesday. His bail was set at about $110,000, but he would not be allowed to leave Iran unless a judge grants him departure permission.”

Judge Hassan Haddad told FNA earlier that “Tajbakhsh must come to the court if he or his lawyer is summoned.”

Meantime, Haddad said that Tajbakhsh may leave the country if he can receive the positive view of the interrogator of his case.

Iranian judiciary authorities two weeks ago released Haleh Esfandyari, another Iranian-American accused of harming national security, on a bail at the equivalent of $333,000.

Esfandyari heads the Middle East program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, a Washington think tank. She was barred from leaving the country and subjected to interrogation as she was leaving Iran after what was meant to be a brief trip to her native country over the Christmas holidays.

Three days later, authorities arrested Kian Tajbakhsh. Both were charged with undermining Iran’s national security.

Esfandyari and Tajbakhsh appeared on Iranian television this summer in a two-part documentary called “In the Name of Democracy,” which showed them confessing to taking part in a US-backed plot to spark a peaceful revolution against Iran’s leaders.

Esfandyari said she had helped create a network “to lead to very fundamental changes in Iran’s system.”

Tajbakhsh told the same program, “The aim of the Soros centre was to bring a model of the Western democracy” to Iran after an eventual conflict.

Iran has repeatedly protested that the United States has been seeking to spark a velvet revolution in Iran under the guise of initiatives to promote democracy.

Esfandyari was later allowed to leave Iran after she was released on bail on August 21.

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