Iran has confirmed that Robin Shahini, an Iranian-American from San Diego, was arrested while visiting family in the city of Gorgan on July 11:
— Hadi Nili (@HadiNili) July 24, 2016
— Mike Pompeo (@RepMikePompeo) July 25, 2016
We still don’t know the specific charges, but it might be over comments he made online:
His girlfriend said she was worried Shahini was arrested over online comments criticizing Iran’s human rights record. She said he was arrested in Gorgan, where he was visiting his family.
Shahini, 46, left Iran in 1998 and lived in San Diego. He graduated in May from San Diego State University.
Iran does not recognize dual nationalities, which means he cannot receive consular assistance.
There are three dual nationals and a Lebanese man who have been detained in Iran in recent months. The four, who have ties to Britain, Canada and the United States, all are believed to have been detained by Iran’s paramilitary Revolutionary Guard, a hard-line force charged with ensuring the country’s Islamic government remains in power. The charges they face remain unclear.
Robin (Reza) Shahini, another Iranian-American visiting family in Iran arrested a week ago. pic.twitter.com/WPJhoMiqnH
— IranHumanRights.org (@ICHRI) July 21, 2016
Earlier this year, Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian was released after a prisoner swap was negotiated between the two countries:
Reports: Iran to release journo Jason Rezaian, 3 others in 'prisoner swap' https://t.co/KkxIIhdisx
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) January 16, 2016