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Politics

Jailed Iranian-American Released and Flown Out of Iran

October 5, 2022
Akhtar Safi
1 min read
Baquer Namazi, a US citizen held in Iran on spying charges, has been released and has left the country
Baquer Namazi, a US citizen held in Iran on spying charges, has been released and has left the country

Baquer Namazi, a US citizen held in Iran on spying charges, has left the country, the country’s state news agency announced Wednesday. 

The family's lawyer, Jared Genser, confirmed his release by sharing a photo of him on the plane.

"Baquer Namazi has finally left Iran after 6.5 years as an illegal detainee," he wrote on Twitter. "He will arrive in Muscat, Oman, and then will travel on to Abu Dhabi for urgent medical treatment."

Namazi arrived in Oman on Wednesday after more than six years in detention in Iran, but one of his sons remains imprisoned in Tehran, according to his family.

"Mohammad Baquer Namazi, who was released from prison a few days ago, left Iran today and went to Oman,” IRNA reported with a video showing him boarding a private plane accompanied by a man in Omani traditional clothes.

"In a conversation with the Iranian president, the United Nations Secretary-General thanked the president of Iran and the foreign minister of Oman for Tehran's action for releasing Namazi," It added. 

Namazi, 85, a former U.N. official, has both U.S. and Iranian citizenship and was one of four Iranian-Americans, including his son Siamak, who had been detained in Iran or prevented from leaving the country.

He was charged in Iran for “collaboration with a hostile government” in 2016 and sentenced to 10 years in prison.

His son Siamak Namazi, 51, was granted a one-week furlough for the first time in seven years of imprisonment before his father flew out of the country.

Iran was reportedly awaiting the release of about $7 billion of its funds frozen in South Korea, for his release, state media reported last week.

But the US National Security Council said on Twitter that reports from Iranian sources of any release of funds related to Baquer or Siamak Namazi's release were "categorically false".

IranWire has long reported on the Islamic Republic's policy of detaining dual nationals effectively as hostages in its political confrontations with the United States and other powers.

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