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Iranian scientist heads for home

[ 2010-07-15 11:10]     字号 [] [] []  
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An Iranian nuclear scientist who surfaced in Washington more than a year after Teheran claimed he had been abducted by US spies is on his way home, Iran's foreign ministry said on Wednesday.

"A few moments ago, Shahram Amiri left US soil ... for Iran following efforts taken by the Islamic Republic of Iran and the effective cooperation of the Pakistani embassy in Washington," ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast was quoted as saying by ISNA news agency.

He said Amiri was first headed to a "third country" from where he would continue to Iran, adding that the head of the Iran Interests Section in Washington, Mostafa Rahmani, saw him off.

Repeating accusations that Amiri was kidnapped, Mehmanparast said Iran would continue to pursue his case "legally and diplomatically."

Amiri, who disappeared from Saudi Arabia in May 2009, surfaced in Washington's Iran Interests Section office on Tuesday.

Iranian officials have maintained that he was kidnapped by the Central Intelligence Agency, a claim which has been vehemently denied by Washington.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told reporters on Tuesday there was nothing stopping Amiri returning to Iran.

"He's free to go. He was free to come. These decisions are his alone to make," she said.

Some analysts speculated that Amiri's case was an apparent defection gone wrong that could embarrass the United States and its efforts to gather intelligence on what it believes is an Iranian nuclear weapons program.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Iranian scientist heads for home

About the broadcaster:

Iranian scientist heads for home

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.