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Iran releases Iranian-French academic Fariba Adelkhah on furlough

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Iran has released Iranian-French academic Fariba Adelkhah on furlough for five days, her lawyer told the Emtedad website on Tuesday, a day after Tehran and Washington wound up indirect talks in Vienna to revive a 2015 nuclear pact.

“We hope it (the furlough) will be extended,” Emtedad quoted Hojjat Kermani as saying.

Adelkhah, who is a resident of France and was arrested in 2019 while on a visit to Iran, was sentenced in 2020 to five years in prison on national security charges. She was moved to house arrest later, but in January was returned to jail.

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Adelkhah has denied the charges. France has called them “politically motivated” and repeatedly called for the release of Adelkhah, a researcher affiliated with Paris’s prestigious Sciences Po university.

Iran does not recognize dual nationality, saying the case is an Iranian domestic legal matter.

In March 2020, Iran released Adelkhah’s partner, French academic Roland Marchal, who was detained along with her, after France freed Iranian engineer Jalal Ruhollahnejad, detained over alleged violations of US sanctions against Tehran.

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