Iran confirms it has detained US navy veteran Michael White

Iran confirms it has detained US navy veteran Michael White

Iran confirms it has detained US navy veteran Michael White

Iran has confirmed it is holding a US Navy veteran - a development likely to worsen relations between the two countries even further.

The US and Iran do not maintain diplomatic relations, and communications between the two nations are passed along by Swiss diplomats.

Iran's Foreign Ministry confirmed on Wednesday that an American citizen had been arrested in the city of Mashhad, but denied reports he had been badly treated, according to the Islamic Republic News Agency.

"Due to privacy considerations, we have no additional information to provide at this time", the representative said.

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"We have no higher priority than the safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas".

According to Farhadi, White said he became acquainted with an Iranian girl online and traveled to Iran three times to visit her.

Mr Farhadi told IranWire that Mr White's life was in danger because he was being kept in a prison with unsafe criminals. He described White as fearful and depressed, "suffering psychologically", while being held in a ward with risky criminals.

The New York Times has quoted White's mother, Joanne, as saying she learned three weeks ago that her son was being held at an Iranian prison.

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Farhadi said he waited until after he fled to Turkey to speak with reporters about White. The family of Michael White revealed this week that he's been in captivity since last summer and his mother said she has no idea about any possible charges against him. She said she filed a missing person report after he failed to return to work in California in late July.

"I'm very anxious about his health", she told CBS News, "He just got over cancer and I'm anxious about his condition".

Sources told CBS News that Iran is holding the U.S. nationals to try to win concessions such as those received in a deal reached with former President Barack Obama.

At least four USA citizens and one US permanent resident are now being held by Iran. "I promised to myself that if I got out of prison one of the first things that I would do would be to inform people about the situation of this American prisoner". "We're dealing with an 82-year-old man who has dedicated his entire life to serving humanity", Baquer's son Babak Namazi told NPR.

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Human rights behind bars symbol rendering concerning totalitarian systems.

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