Iranian sentenced to death for spying, arrested by Hezbollah in Syria, handed to Iran

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An Iranian sentenced to death on charges of spying for the CIA and the Mossad, was arrested and handed over to Iran by the Lebanese Hezbollah in Syria, the semi-official Tasnim news agency reported on Sunday.

Iran’s judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili said on Tuesday that Mahmoud Mousavi-Majd has been sentenced to death for providing information about slain commander Qassem Soleimani’s whereabouts prior to his killing.

Since then, judiciary officials and state media have given several conflicting statements about Mousavi-Majd and why he has been sentenced to death. The judiciary refuted its spokesman’s statement on the same day, saying Mousavi-Majd’s case was not related to Soleimani’s killing and that he was arrested long before the commander was killed.

Mousavi-Majd was arrested in April 2018 by the Lebanese Hezbollah in Syria, Tasnim said on Sunday.

He had left Iran with his family as a child and grew up in Syria, according to Tasnim.

Mousavi-Majd was not a member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) or a military officer of any kind, Tasnim said, adding that he joined the Iranian forces in Syria as a driver.

He received a monthly payment of $5,000 from the CIA and the Mossad in exchange for information on Iranian forces in Syria, Tasnim claimed.

Mousavi-Majd has been in detention since his arrest in April 2018 and had no role in the killing of Soleimani, Tasnim said.

Soleimani, who headed the Quds Force, the overseas arms of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, was killed in a US airstrike at Baghdad’s international airport on January 3.

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