White House urges Iran to release US detainees
The United States is considering new sanctions if their request is not followed up.
The White House has increased the pressure on Iran , Friday, July 21, calling Tehran to repatriate quickly Americans held by the Islamic Republic, under pain for it to see infliction of “new” sanctions.
The warning came in the context of tensions between Washington and Tehran, a few days after Donald Trump announced a new round of measures against Iran, but did not reverse the agreement on nuclear . “President [Donald] Trump is ready to inflict new and serious consequences on Iran unless all unjustly imprisoned American citizens are released and surrendered,” the White House wrote in a statement.
These threats related to the fate of US nationals detained in Iran open a new diplomatic front between the two countries.
” State policy instruments “
In particular, the US president “urges Tehran to send home Robert Levinson. Who has been detained for more than a decade and is asking Iran to release Siamak and Bagher Namazi, who were arrested under the Obama administration . ”
“For nearly 40 years, Iran has used detentions and hostage taking as instruments of state policy. A practice that continues to this day with the sentencing of Xiyue Wang to ten years in prison , Continued the White House.
Xiyue Wang was quoted as being a Sino-American, sentenced on July 16 to ten years’ imprisonment by the Iranian justice. Who accused him of infiltration “without providing any details on the alleged acts,” Washington said.
Sentenced for “espionage”
Businessman Siamak Namazi and his father Mohammad Bagher Namazi, two Iranian-American nationals, were sentenced in October 2016 with four others to 10 years in prison for “espionage” in favor of Washington.
The United States has also long called for the release of Robert Levinson, a former FBI agent, who has been missing in Iran since 2007.
Several US officials say Donald Trump is interested in the fate of Americans detained abroad. He would be deeply affected by the death of Otto Warmbier, a student released in June by North Korea after being sentenced. Falling into a deep coma during his detention, he died shortly after his repatriation to the United States. The affair had deeply moved American public opinion.
“President Donald Trump and his administration are redoubling efforts to bring home Americans unjustly detained abroad,” the statement said. Washington has no diplomatic relations with Tehran since 1980.