Iranian authorities give conflicting deadlines for Washington Post reporter verdict

Published August 17th, 2015 - 11:33 GMT

Iran's state prosecutor and judiciary head gave contradictory timelines on Sunday for a verdict in the case against a US-Iranian journalist being detained by Tehran on spying charges.

Jason Rezaian, a Washington Post reporter who has been held for more than year, attended a fourth and final hearing early last week on charges of espionage, collaborating with hostile governments and spreading propaganda.

According to the state-run ISNA news agency, Iran's chief prosecutor Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei said the court is only waiting for a complete written plea from Rezaian's attorney before handing down a verdict.

"I'm not allowed to give any details, but I assume that a judgement will be issued at the end of this week or next," Ejei was quoted as saying.

The prosecutor's estimate conflicts with comments by judiciary head Gholamhossein Esmaeili, carried by ISNA hours earlier, that said a verdict in Rezaian's case is not expected any time soon.

Rezaian's lawyer Lejla Ahsan said Monday she expected the Revolutionary Court in Tehran to issue a verdict within a week.

The US government has called the accusations absurd and demanded Rezaian's immediate release.

Rezaian, who holds dual US and Iranian citizenship, was arrested in July 2014 with his wife Yeganeh Salehi and a female photographer. The two women were released from detention.

By Farshid Motahari

© 2021 dpa GmbH

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