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Father of US-Iranian Journalist Demands Her Release

The father of American-Iranian journalist Roxana Saberi is calling on Iran to free his daughter.

Reza Saberi said in an interview Thursday with the Associated Press that he will remain in Iran until she is released.

Iranian authorities said the journalist will stand trial next week on charges of spying.

A U.S. State Department spokesman, Robert Wood, said Thursday that the espionage charge is baseless, and he again emphasized that Washington wants Iran to release Saberi and reunite her with her family.

Deputy Prosecutor Hassan Haddad announced the espionage case Wednesday, more than two months after Saberi was detained in Tehran's Evin prison.

An investigative judge (identified only by his last name, Heidarifard) involved in the case told Iranian state television that Saberi used journalism as a cover to pass classified information to U.S. intelligence services.

She was earlier accused of working illegally in the country without valid press credentials.

The 31-year-old U.S.-born journalist has citizenship of both the U.S and Iran. Saberi has lived in Iran for six years and reported for several Western news agencies before being detained.

Iranian officials said Iran's Revolutionary Court, which handles security issues, is reviewing Saberi's case.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Wednesday she was very concerned by news of the espionage charge and called for Saberi's immediate release.

The Committee to Protect Journalists issued a statement Wednesday expressing deep concern over the reports Saberi has been charged with espionage.