UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — A British citizen of Iranian descent has been sentenced to 10 years in jail for spying for Israel, state television reported on Tuesday.
Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said last year Western agents had “penetrated” the country and its relations with major world powers had deteriorated as Washington withdrew from the nuclear deal they signed with Tehran in 2015.
Judicial spokesman Gholamhossein Ismaili said the woman was named Anousheh Ashouri. “British-Iranian Anousheh Ashouri was sentenced to 10 years in prison for spying for the Israeli Mossad … and two years in prison on charges of graft.”
Ashouri could not be contacted and it was not immediately clear whether the sentences were concurrent or consecutive.
A British Foreign Office spokesman in London said Britain was supporting her family and “our embassy in Tehran continues to seek consular access.”
“Addressing all dual nationals in Iran is a priority and we raise their issues at the highest level … We urge Iran to allow them to be reunited with their families.”
Iran said in July it had arrested 17 CIA spies and sentenced some to death. It is not clear whether today’s declaration is linked to the same issue.
Ismaili also said the Supreme Court had upheld “Aras Amiri, 10 years in prison for spying for Britain”. Amiri, who worked for the British Council and lived in London, was arrested while visiting her family in Tehran in March 2018.
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