Iran says it will allow contact with arrested German reporters
Iranian authorities said Tuesday they had given permission for diplomats to contact two German reporters arrested in the country nine days ago, DPA reported.
Ramin Mehmanparast, a spokesman for the foreign ministry in Tehran said that permission had now been given for access to the two - being held in the northern city of Tabriz after being arrested on suspicion of illegally carrying out journalistic activities without the relevant permission.
The pair, as yet unnamed and with no official confirmation of who they were working for, had apparently interviewed the son of Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, an Iranian woman sentenced to death by stoning for murder and adultery.
A spokesman for the foreign ministry in Berlin said they welcomed the decision to grant permission, they had not been able to make contact with the reporters yet.
The Iranian government, which says the two Germans had been working with "counter-revolutionaries," will be prosecuted for working as journalists illegally. The two men had reportedly entered the country on tourist visas.
Mohammadi-Ashtiani's case has drawn international attention and outrage. Seemingly under international pressure, the Iranian authorities temporarily suspended the stoning sentence earlier this year.