TEHRAN (JNS) — A Russian journalist was arrested in Tehran on Thursday by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps for allegedly cooperating with Israeli intelligence.
In a brief phone conversation with her mother late on Thursday, reporter Yulia Yuzik said security forces broke into her hotel room and detained her on suspicion of having ties to Israeli intelligence services, her ex-husband Boris Voitsekhovsky told Reuters.
Yuzik has no lawyer. An Iranian court will decide on Saturday whether to release her or press formal charges and keep her in custody, said Voitsekhovsky.
Russia’s foreign ministry summoned the Iranian ambassador on Friday to try to resolve the issue of Yuzik’s detention. Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said, “Due to the detention in Tehran of Russian citizen Yulia Yuzik, Iran’s ambassador has been invited to the foreign ministry to facilitate a quick clarification of the circumstances of the incident and the protection of the rights of the Russian citizen.”
Boris Wojciechowski, a colleague of Yuzik’s, said the Russian journalist worked in Tehran as a reporter “a few years ago.”
Voitsekhovsky said about her most recent trip to Iran, “(This time) she just went there as a private person. She just went there, stayed at the hotel, chatted with local journalists.”
He added that Yuzik did not hold joint Israeli citizenship or a visa for Israel, and last visited the Jewish state about 15 or 17 years ago to report on the Israeli army life for Russia’s Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper.