شنبه ۲۹ مهر ۱۳۹۶ تهران ۲۱:۴۴
Doctor Says Canadian Journalist Seriously Abused before Dying in Iranian Jail but Iranian Officials Call him an impostor
A former Iranian army doctor says an Iranian-born Canadian journalist suffered serious bodily injury before dying two years ago in an Iranian prison. Shahram Azam, who recently received political asylum in Canada, says he is a former staff physician in Tehran's Baqiatollah military hospital where Kazemi died in 2003. Zahra Kazemi died days after being arrested for taking pictures outside an Iranian prison (Evin). Mr. Azam said he examined her in hospital on June 26, 2003 and found injuries to her entire body that could only have been caused by torture and rape.
It was just days after the 54-year-old Kazemi was arrested for taking photographs outside a Tehran prison during student-led protests against the ruling theocracy.
Responding to Azam's remarks, Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Pierre Pettigrew said it only reinforced Ottawa's belief that Kazemi was murdered.
Iranian officials first claimed that Kazemi's death was an accident. Last year, the Iranian judiciary cleared an intelligence ministry agent of her killing "due to a lack of sufficient evidence."
In an statement on 2nd April Iran's Foreign Ministry has labelled Shahram Azam as an "impostor".
A spokesman (Hamid-Reza Assefi) for Iran's Foreign Ministry said Baqiatollah officials denied that a person named Azam had ever been on their medical team.
Azam fled Iran last August and gained political asylum in Canada with the help of Kazemi's son, Stephan Hashemi.