TEHRAN (AFP) – Iran has summoned the Swiss charge d’affaires to protest the “abduction” of a nuclear scientist by US intelligence agents, state television’s website reported on Wednesday.
The Swiss mission in Tehran handles US interests as Washington has had no diplomatic ties with Iran for more than 30 years.
“The Swiss charge d’affaires (Georg Steiner) was summoned on Tuesday following the release of new documents relating to the abduction of Shahram Amiri by American security forces,” the report said, quoting a foreign ministry statement.
Iran’s foreign ministry said on July 4 it had presented to the Swiss embassy “evidence” that Amiri, who has been missing since last year, was abducted by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Iranian television on June 29 screened a video of a man claiming to be Amiri and saying that he had managed to escape from the hands of US intelligence agents in Virginia.
“I could be re-arrested at any time by US agents… I am not free and I’m not allowed to contact my family. If something happens and I do not return home alive, the US government will be responsible,” he said.
“I ask Iranian officials and organisations that defend human rights to raise pressure on the US government for my release and return to my country,” the man said, adding he has not “betrayed” Iran.
Amiri disappeared in June 2009 after arriving in Saudi Arabia for a pilgrimage. Iran accused US agents of abducting him with the help of Saudi intelligence services.
ABC news in the United States reported in March that Amiri had defected and was working with the CIA. US officials have rejected these allegations.