France says dual national Fariba Adelkhah arrested in Iran

Paris says it does not have satisfactory information" on her status

This Friday, July 11, 2019 photo, shows part of northern Tehran, Iran. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)
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France has not received a satisfactory response from Iran over the fate of Franco-Iranian dual national Fariba Adelkhah, who has been arrested in Iran, and requests consular access to her without delay, its foreign ministry said on Monday.

Adelkhah, who is an academic researcher, was arrested in Iran in June by the Revolutionary Guards for allegedly spying, according to media reports over the weekend.

"The French authorities in this difficult context have taken steps with Iranian authorities to get information from them on her situation and the conditions of her arrest and asked for consular access as is foreseen in these circumstances, necessary precursor for her quick release," Foreign ministry spokeswoman Agnes von der Muhll said in a statement.

"No satisfactory response has been given to these requests. France calls on the Iranian authorities to bring to light Mrs Adelkhah's situation and reiterates its requests, in particular the authorisation of consular access without delay," she added.

When asked earlier on Monday about the arrest, Iranian government spokesman Ali Rabiei was quoted as saying by the semi-official Tasnim news agency as saying that he had heard reports of the arrest, but had no further information.

Adelkhah, an anthropologist, is Senior Research Fellow at Sciences Po in Paris. Her arrest comes at a sensitive time when France is trying to de-escalate tension between longtime foes Iran and the United states over Tehran's 2015 nuclear deal.

Iran has previously arrested and charged French citizens in the past, including in 2005 and 2009.