New video of missing nuclear scientist

29 Jun 2010

A new video has surfaced in which a man who identifies himself as Shahram Amiri, an Iranian nuclear scientist who went missing about a year ago during a trip to Saudi Arabia, says he is being held in the United States against his will. Amiri says he has fled from US security officials and recorded the video in a “safe place” in Virginia. He also warns that he could be killed for refusing to betray his country. “I call on [Iran’s] officials and human rights groups to increase their activities and pressure on the US government for my release, and allow me to return to my dear country Iran before anything happens to me.”

This is the third video featuring Amiri released in recent weeks.

The US television network ABC reported in March that Amiri had defected to the United States and was assisting the CIA in efforts to undermine Iran’s nuclear activities. But Tehran maintains that Amiri was kidnapped by US authorities. In the first video aired on Iranian state television, Amiri said he had been kidnapped from Saudi Arabi and held against his will by the United States. In the second video, released within hours on YouTube, Amiri said he is happily studying in the United States and hopes to return home after obtaining his PhD.

In this latest video, Amiri identifies the date as Monday, June 14, 2010. “I have been able to escape from US security agents. I’m recording this video in a safe location. I could be arrested again by US security agents,” Amiri says. He then says that the first video, released by Iran’s state-controlled television, is “totally authentic and does not contain any lies. But the second video that was released by the US government and posted on YouTube is not true – it is a lie,” he says. “I am not free here and I don’t have the permission to contact my family and other people.”

US and Iranian officials have not yet reacted to the ABC report and Amiri’s third video, which deepens the mystery regarding his fate.

Golnaz Esfandiari of Radio Free Europe writes: “The latest development poses many questions: If Amiri is being held against his will, how did he manage to escape and record the new video and post it on YouYube? How did he manage to send the first video to Iran? If he’s studying in the United States, why didn’t he bring his family? Didn’t he realize before defecting that he would jeopardize his family by leaving them behind in Iran? Is he lying in all three released videos to protect his wife and young son? (…) If the war of videos continues, then we can most likely expect another clip in which Amiri says he is freely studying in the United States.”

source: Radio Free Europe

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    تهران‌ریویو مجله‌ای اینترنتی، چند رسانه‌ای و غیر انتفاعی است. هدف ما به سادگی، افزایش سطح گفتمان عمومی در مورد ایده‌ها، آرمان‌ها و وقایع جهان امروز است. این مشارکت و نوشته‌های شما مخاطبان است که کار چند رسانه‌ای ما را گسترش داده و به آن غنا و طراوت می‌بخشد. رایگان بودن این مجله اینترنتی به ما اجازه می‌دهد تا در گستره بیشتری اهداف خود را پیگیری کرده و تاثیرگذار باشیم. مهم‌تر از همه اینکه سردبیران و دست‌اندرکاران تهران‌ریویو به دور از حب و بغض‌های رایج و با نگاهی بی‌طرفانه سعی دارند به مسایل روز جهان نگاه کرده و بر روی ایده‌های ارزشمند انگشت بگذارند. تهران ریویو برای ادامه فعالیت و نشر مقالات نیازمند یاری و کمک مالی شماست.