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Iran set to execute jailed doctor accused of spying for Israel

Ahmadreza Djalali was arrested in April 2016 while attending a conference in Tehran, then put on trial and sentenced to death in 2017

A flyer during a protest outside the Iranian embassy in Brussels for Ahmadreza Djalali, an Iranian academic detained in Tehran for nearly a year and reportedly sentenced to death for espionage, February 13, 2017. (Photo by DIRK WAEM / Belga / AFP)
A flyer during a protest outside the Iranian embassy in Brussels for Ahmadreza Djalali, an Iranian academic detained in Tehran for nearly a year and reportedly sentenced to death for espionage, February 13, 2017. (Photo by DIRK WAEM / Belga / AFP)

TEHRAN — A Swedish-Iranian academic convicted of spying for Israel is set to be executed in Iran later this month, a news agency in the Islamic republic reported on Wednesday.

Ahmadreza Djalali, formerly based in Stockholm where he worked at the Karolinska Institute, a medical university, was invited to a conference at Tehran University in April 2016, where he was subsequently detained.

He was sentenced to death in 2017 after being found guilty of passing information about two Iranian nuclear scientists to the Mossad that led to their assassinations.

In a voice recording made in jail, then later posted on YouTube, Djalali claimed that he was coerced by interrogators into confessing wrongdoing, Voice of America reported.

Citing informed sources, ISNA news agency said on Wednesday that his death sentence would be carried out by May 21.

Djalali was granted Swedish citizenship while in detention in February 2018, a few months after Iran’s supreme court confirmed the death sentence.

United Nations rights experts said in March 2021 that he was in critical condition after months of solitary confinement and called for his release.

People demonstrate outside the Stockholm District Court in connection with the war crime trial against Hamid Noury who is being questioned in Stockholm District Court, Stockholm, November 23, 2021 (Duygu GETIREN / TT NEWS AGENCY / AFP)

Wednesday’s report comes on the last day of the trial in Stockholm of Hamid Noury, a former Iranian prison official.

Noury, 61, stands accused of crimes against humanity and war crimes for alleged involvement in the executions of a large number of inmates in the 1980s.

The prosecution said the prisoners were members of the People’s Mujahedin of Iran, an exiled opposition organization that Tehran considers a “terrorist group,” as well as other outlawed groups.

Lawyers for Noury, who was arrested at Stockholm airport in November 2019, have denied he was present for the alleged killings.

Iran said on Monday that it had summoned Sweden’s ambassador after prosecutors in the Nordic country sought a life sentence for Noury.

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