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4 French citizens imprisoned in Iran
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Iran’s Regime Releases French Hostage Louis Arnaud

Louis Arnaud, a French citizen imprisoned in Iran who had been sentenced to five years on security charges, returned to Paris on Thursday after being released from prison.

According to images broadcast on French television, Louis Arnaud, tired but smiling, disembarked from a small plane at Le Bourget Airport in the suburbs of Paris, shook hands with Stéphane Séjourné, the French Foreign Minister, and then embraced his parents.

Holding hands with his relatives, Arnaud entered a private room at the airport, away from the cameras.

Stéphane Séjourné expressed happiness over the return of the French hostage.

He added that our diplomatic service is still working to free three other French citizens: Jacques Paris, Cécile Kohler, and a man known only as Olivier, who are being held in Iranian prisons.

Arnaud, a 36-year-old consultant, began a world tour in July 2022, which brought him to Iran.

His mother, Sylvie, said a few months ago that it was a country he had long wished to visit because of its rich history and hospitable people.

But on September 28, 2022, he was arrested along with other Europeans accused of participating in protests over the death of Mahsa Amini in the custody of the Morality Police.

While Arnaud’s companions were soon released, he was held in prison until his November sentencing on charges of propaganda and harming Iran’s national security.

French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday, June 12, thanked Oman for its mediation and all those who played a role in Louis Arnaud’s release.

Louis Arnaud est libre. Il sera demain en France après une trop longue incarcération en Iran.

Je remercie nos amis omanais et tous ceux qui ont œuvré à cette issue heureuse.

Ce soir, je pense aussi à Cécile, Jacques et Olivier. J'appelle l'Iran à les libérer sans délai.

— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) June 12, 2024

The French President also called on the Iranian regime to unconditionally release the other French citizens imprisoned in Iran.

4 French citizens imprisoned in Iran

Cécile Kohler, a teacher and union activist, and her partner Jacques Paris, who had traveled to Iran on tourist visas, were arrested in Iran on May 1, 2022.

Earlier, Bernard Phelan, a 64-year-old French-Irish citizen, and Benjamin Brière, a 38-year-old French tourist, both detained in Vakilabad Prison in Mashhad, were released on May 11, 2024.

Fariba Adelkhah, an Iranian-French researcher who had been released last winter but had been barred from leaving the country for months, was finally able to leave Iran and return to France.

Tehran has long used hostage-taking as a major component of its foreign policy to pressure its counterparts to give it concessions.

Human rights activists have consistently condemned this “hostage-taking” policy of the Iranian regime, calling these detentions “arbitrary.”

The post Iran’s Regime Releases French Hostage Louis Arnaud appeared first on Iran Focus.