French filmmaker on trial in Iran

Other News Materials 19 November 2007 21:35 (UTC +04:00)

A French-Iranian filmmaker was questioned for several hours by Iranian judges in a closed-door trial prompted by her efforts to film a documentary relating to the Iraq-Iran war, a media watchdog said Monday.

Solouki, a graduate student at Quebec University who holds French and Iranian citizenship, is accused of intent to commit propaganda, according to Reporters Without Borders.

She went to Iran in December 2006 to film a documentary on events following a 1988 cease-fire between Iraq and Iran, and was arrested this February. She was freed in March has since been barred from leaving the country.

On Saturday, she went on trial in a closed-door session in Tehran, said Hajar Smouni of the Paris-based media watchdog, known by its French acronym RSF. RSF has urged Solouki's release.

The judges questioned Solouki about why she was in Iran, what she filmed and whom she spoke to, said Smouni, who speaks regularly with Solouki and her family. The court postponed the proceedings until a later date, without specifying when.

The French Foreign Ministry has repeatedly expressed concern about Solouki's case and is in contact with her lawyer in Iran. The ministry would not comment on Saturday's judicial proceedings.

There was no immediate comment from Iranian officials on Solouki's case. ( AP )