Iran rejects ‘interference’ over academic facing execution

Iran has warned against “all interference” by Sweden after Stockholm called on Tehran not to execute Iranian-Swedish academic Ahmadreza Djalali, who was handed a death penalty three years ago for spying.

“The judicial power of the Islamic Republic is independent — all interference in the issuance or carrying out of judicial decisions is rejected as unacceptable,” Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh says in a statement.

Sweden’s Foreign Minister Anne Linde on Tuesday took to Twitter after being in contact with her Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif, in the wake of reports that Tehran was preparing to carry out the execution of Djalali, a specialist in emergency medicine.

Ahmadreza Djalali, left, and his family. (Screen capture via YouTube/Amnesty International)

“Sweden denounces the death penalty and is working to not have the sentence against Djalali carried out,” Linde wrote.

Khatibzadeh says that the information being used by the Swedish authorities to inform their position on Djalali’s circumstances is “incomplete and false.” He does not elaborate.


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