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Iranian-American Journalist Allowed to Leave Iran


Iranian-American journalist Parnaz Azima has left Iran after being prevented from leaving for eight months.

U.S.-funded broadcaster Radio Free Europe-Radio Liberty says it remains concerned about the criminal charges against Azima. Iran's Prosecutor's office accused Azima of acting against national security and spreading propaganda about the Iranian state. The charges have not been lifted.

Azima is a correspondent for Radio Farda, which is a Persian language U.S. news service affiliated with Radio Free Europe-Radio Liberty and Voice of America.

Iranian authorities confiscated Azima's passport in January during a trip to visit her hospitalized mother, and prevented Azima from leaving the country. She rejected the charges against her, but had to pay bail of about $550,000.

Two other Iranian-Americans, urban planning consultant Kian Tajbakhsh and peace activist Ali Shakeri, remain in detention in Iran.

Tajbakhsh and Shakeri have been held since May.

Last week, Tajbakhsh told reporters who visited him in Tehran's Evin prison that he expected to be freed soon. He is a consultant with the Soros Foundation's Open Society Institute.

A fourth Iranian-American, Haleh Esfandiari, is back in the United States following her release on bail earlier this month, after spending three months in Evin prison.

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