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Iran has granted bail to Iranian-American conservationist, Morad Tahbaz, after he was convicted of security offenses, according to the semi-official Iranian ILNA news agency.
Tahbaz, who also holds British citizenship, was arrested in 2018 and sentenced to 10 years in prison for “contact with the enemy U.S. government.” The punishment was part of a crackdown on those with dual citizenship amid tensions with the U.S. and other western nations.
“Mr. Tahbaz was released on bail and with an electronic bracelet,” ILNA quoted Tahbaz’s lawyer, Hojjat Kermani, as saying on Wednesday.
The report of Tahbaz’s bail comes a day after European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said he put forward a new draft to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
US HIGHLIGHTS ADVANTAGES OF NUCLEAR DEAL, BUT ACKNOWLEDGES STALL WITH IRAN
Tahbaz is one of the dozens of dual nationals and foreigners who have been arrested in Iran in recent years on espionage charges.
U.S. government officials have said that at the time of his arrest, Tahbaz was working in Iran on conservation causes with the endorsement of the United Nations Development Program and had been granted government permits.
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Tahbaz has been admired for his work to help save endangered species, including the Asiatic cheetah. There are believed to be fewer than 50 Asiatic cheetahs left in the world, and all are located in Iran.