Home World Wide News Iran says it executed accused CIA spy for selling missile programme secrets to the US

Iran says it executed accused CIA spy for selling missile programme secrets to the US

Iran says it executed accused CIA spy for selling missile programme secrets to the US


A former Iran defence ministry staffer was executed after being convicted of spying for the Central Intelligence Agency, the country’s judiciary said on Tuesday.

Reza Asgari, an Iranian citizen, was executed last week for selling information on Tehran’s missile programme, according to the Islamic Republic judiciary’s spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili, quoted in the country’s official Mizan Online News Agency.

Mr Asgari worked in the aerospace division before retiring about four years ago, Mr Esmaili added.

“In the last years of his service, he joined the CIA, he sold information about our missiles… to the CIA and took money from them,” Mr Esmaili said, according to the Associated Press. “He was identified, tried and sentenced to death.”

Mr Esmaili said that another Iranian found guilty of espionage, Mahmoud Mousavi Majd, would also face the death penalty for helping the US locate Quds Force General Qasem Soleimani, according to an AFP translation of the statement.

Soleimani was killed in an American drone strike on 3 January after Washington said he coordinated attacks against US troops in the region.

Iran retaliated by firing missiles at US troops stationed at the Ain Al-Asad base in Iraq. No US soldiers were killed in the attack and Donald Trump chose not to retaliate militarily.

Mr Asgari is the second former Iranian defence ministry staffer to be executed in the past month over accusations of spying.

Tehran said Jalal Hajizavar was hanged in prison in June after admitting in court that he was paid to spy for the CIA.

Mr Hajizavar’s wife was also sentenced to 15 years in prison after authorities confiscated espionage equipment in their residence.

Iran regularly announces arrests and convictions of spies alleged to be working for foreign countries like the US and Israel.

In December, Iran announced that it arrested eight people “linked to the CIA” following street protests over petrol price hikes.

In July last year, Iran said that it captured 17 spies suspected of working for the CIA. Some were sentenced to death.

Iran’s judiciary also said on Tuesday that it executed two men over the 2010 bombing of a military parade that killed 12 in the predominantly Kurdish city of Mahabad, according to a Reuters translation from the Islamic Republic News Agency.

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