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Iran Releases Dissident Journalist, Family Says

Iranian journalist Keyvan Samimi is seen in an undated photo by Hosseinronaghi. (Wikimedia Commons)

Iranian dissident journalist Keyvan Samimi, imprisoned since December 2020, was released Thursday, his family told AFP.

Samimi, age 74, had been sentenced to three years in prison for "conspiracy against national security."

"Keyvan Samimi, who was transferred last year to Semnan prison," more than 200 kilometers east of Tehran, "was released this afternoon," his family said.

The journalist had been authorized in February 2022 to return home because of health problems.

But in May, he was sent back to prison after being suspected of carrying out activities against national security during his provisional release, according to the Mehr news agency.

"The Tehran prosecutor issued a new indictment against Keyvan Samimi last month, accusing him of rallying against the country's security and referred the case to the Revolutionary Court," his family said Thursday.

The journalist published a message in December from his cell in support of the protest movement that has shaken the country since the death on September 16 of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurd, who died after being arrested by the vice police for violating the Strict Islamic Republic dress code.

Samimi was imprisoned several times before and after the 1979 Islamic Revolution.