Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Iran says second US-Iranian charged with spying

TEHRAN (AFP) - Iran said on Tuesday it has detained US-Iranian social science scholar Kian Tajbakhsh on charges of spying, the same accusation levelled against another scholar with dual nationality. the judiciary spokesman said on Tuesday.

Judiciary spokesman Ali Reza Jamshidi confirmed that US-Iranian scholar Haleh Esfandiari, who was detained on May 8, has been formally accused by the intelligence ministry of "acting against the security of the country through propaganda and espionage for foreigners."

"The same goes for Mr Tajbakhsh. He is being kept in detention," said Jamshidi, confirming that Esfandiari was also still being held.

An expert in urban planning who has taught in the United States and Iran and worked for the World Bank, Tajbakhsh was arrested on May 11, according to US press reports.

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