October 12, 2015 Washington, D.C. – According to Iranian media sources, Jason Rezaian, an Iranian American journalist, has been convicted by an Iranian court. Rezaian was tried on four charges, including espionage. The court failed to specify which charges Rezaian was found guilty of, as well as what his conviction sentence will be.
The verdict was immediately denounced by Rezaian’s family and colleagues. “Jason is a victim — arrested without cause, held for months in isolation, without access to a lawyer, subjected to physical mistreatment and psychological abuse, and now convicted without basis,” said Martin Baron, executive editor at the Washington Post “The only thing that has ever been clear about this case is Jason’s innocence. Any fair and just review would quickly overturn this unfounded verdict.”Martin Baron, Executive Editor at the Washington Post.
Rezaian has been stationed in Iran since 2008 and was accredited by the Iranian government to work for the Washington Post in 2012. On July 24th, the Washington Post reported that Rezaian had been detained along with his wife Yeganeh Salehi. Salehi was released on bail in October.
Rezaian’s arrest, detainment, and trial have sparked criticism among human rights’ groups and celebrities. U.S. officials, including President Obama and U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, have reiterated their request for the release of Rezaian and other American citizens detained in Iran. Iranian Americans Amir Hekmati and Pastor Saeed Abedini continue to be detained in Iran.
As an organization that represents the interests of Iranian Americans, PAAIA seeks to protect Iranian Americans’ right to immunity from harassment and unlawful detention when traveling outside the United States, including Iran. PAAIA will continue to urge the United States to make the repatriation of Jason Rezaian and all Americans who are unjustly being detained in Iran a priority.