Sunday, November 23, 2008

Iran executes one 'Israeli spy' and arrests another

Iran has hanged a telecom engineer convicted of spying for Israel, according to reports from Teheran quoted on the BBC. This turn of events should worry Hossein Derakhshan, an earnest Iranian-Canadian blogger who was just arrested on arrival in the Teheran. (Pictured above.) The young guy came under suspicion because he spent time last year in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, exploding propaganda myths by cavorting with the 'entity'--mainly females in bars-- and giving Israelis a 'human face' on his blog, Jahan News. Apparently, the man hailed as Hoder, the Blogfather, has already confessed to spying for Israel.

The Ahmadinejad regime obviously gets very annoyed about any links between Israel and its Iranian citizens. Hence the execution of Ashtari, pictured below.

Ali Ashtari, an Iranian, was convicted in June of spying for Mossad, Israel's intelligence agency. A video said to be of his confession was broadcast on TV.

He was convicted of sending "sensitive information on military, defence and research centres" for three years.

Israeli officials were quoted in June as saying that Israel was not familiar with the case.

Announcing the execution, which reportedly took place on Monday, Iran's official news agency said the case against the 45-year-old was clear and his appeal was summarily dismissed.

"He had spied for Mossad for three years," the state news agency quoted the intelligence ministry's director of counter-terrorism as saying.

Officials said Ashtari was recruited by Israeli secret services to intercept the communications of Iranian officials working in the military and its controversial nuclear programme.

Broadcasting his apparent confession, state TV showed Ashtari sitting down wearing an open-necked shirt and jumper.

"It was my mistake and perhaps I feared going to the intelligence ministry, and this fear was the reason why I kept choosing the wrong path," he said, speaking into the camera.

"Do not repeat the mistakes that I made."

The case unfolded throughout the year against a backdrop of concerns in Iran that Israel was planning to launch a pre-emptive strike against its nuclear facilities.

Israel is a leading advocate of strong action against Tehran, which it believes is seeking to develop nuclear weapons.

Iran denies that charge, saying its nuclear programme is intended for energy supply only.

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