Ahmadinejad: Ensure justice for journalist Saberi

April 20, 2009 - 0:0

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad calls on Iran’s judiciary to ensure justice administered in the case of a detained U.S.-Iranian journalist Roxana Saberi.

Head of the Presidential Office Abdolreza Sheikholeslami, in a letter to Tehran’s prosecutor Saeed Mortazavi, called for fair investigation into the cases of Roxana Saberi and blogger Hossein Derakhshan, IRNA reported Sunday.
“As per the president’s request, please see to it that the legal proceedings are not diverted away from the path of justice,” the letter read. “Personally see to it that the defendants are able to assert their legal rights in defending themselves.”
The letter came one day after the 31-year old Saberi, who holds a dual citizenship for both the United States and Iran, was according to her lawyer Abdolsamad Khorramshai sentenced to eight years in prison on espionage charges.
Khorramshai said on Saturday that he would appeal the verdict.
Saberi, who reported for the BBC, NPR, and Fox News during her six-year stay in Iran, was arrested in January for working “illegally” as a journalist after her press card was revoked in 2006.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton denounced the jail sentence handed to Saberi by an Iranian court on Saturday. “I am deeply disappointed by the reported sentencing of Roxana Saberi by the Iranian judiciary.”
“We will continue to vigorously raise our concerns to the Iranian government,” said Clinton in a statement, adding, “We are working closely with the Swiss Protecting Presence to obtain details about the court’s decision, and to ensure her well being.”
Iranian authorities have not yet commented on whether Saberi has been sentenced.
(Source: Press TV)