June 25, 2024

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Belgian humanitarian Olivier Vandecastel freed in prisoner swap with Iran

Belgian humanitarian Olivier Vandecastel freed in prisoner swap with Iran

Iran and Belgium have reached an agreement“Reciprocal Exchange” The Omani Foreign Ministry announced on Friday, May 26, that the prisoners are currently being smuggled into the Sultanate of Oman, a mediator between Tehran and the West. Two ex-convicts “Today it was flown from Tehran and Brussels to Muscat [vendredi] towards their return to their respective countries”The ministry of this Gulf Arab state said.

Belgian Prime Minister Alexandre de Croix has confirmed the release of humanitarian Olivier Vandecastle, who was detained in Iran for 455 days. “Last night, Olivier was flown to Oman, where he was cared for by a team of Belgian soldiers and diplomats. This morning he underwent a number of medical tests to assess his condition and allow him to return under optimal conditions.Mr. De Crewe said. “If all goes according to plan, he will be with us tonight. Finally Free”he added.

For his part, the Iranian diplomatic chief announced that Brussels had released Iranian diplomat Asadullah Azadi and was returning to Iran. “Our country’s innocent diplomat Asadullah Azadi, who was illegally detained in Germany and Belgium for over two years in violation of international laws, is now returning to his country”Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdullahian thanked Oman for its role in the liberation on Twitter.

read more: The article is reserved for our subscribers Belgian Humanitarian Olivier Vandecastel, Bargaining Chip Between Iran and Belgium

“A Shameful Ransom” According to Iranian Opposition

In March, Belgium’s constitutional court upheld a deal Brussels struck with Tehran to extradite convicted criminals, the government’s only option to free Mr. Vandecastel. According to the exiled Iranian opposition, Belgium paid “A Shameful Ransom” A “Hostages”.

Arrested in Tehran in February 2022, Mr. VandeCastiel, 42, was charged with “espionage.” According to Brussels, he was at heart“Blackmail”and processed “Inhumane”. Olivier Vandecasteele’s family has also condemned the ill treatment meted out to him. His conditions of detention will come under “Torture”At the end of April Alexander impeached de Crewe before the House of Representatives. “He sleeps and eats on the floor and does not have adequate access to medical facilities (…)The light never goes out in his cell”He described.

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read more: The article is reserved for our subscribers Iran has stepped up its threat against hostages by sentencing a Belgian aid worker to 28 years in prison.

Oliver Vandecastel’s release comes two weeks after two French nationals, Benjamin Pryor, 37, and Franco-Irish Bernard Bellon, 64, were jailed for three years in Mashhad prison in northeastern Iran. Detention. According to French diplomatic chief Catherine Colonnade, thirty-five nationals of a dozen member states of the European Union, including four French, are still being held in Iran.

The world with AFP