A Frenchwoman accused of spying in Iran has been told she will not be allowed to leave the country even if she is given bail. Clotilde Reiss was arrested in July on charges of being part of a Western plot to destabilise Iran after the disputed presidential elections. She had been working as a teaching assistant at the University of Isfahan. Her trial ended at the weekend and, while she awaits sentence, Paris has agreed to stand bail.
“We have been calling for her release for more than a month,” said Romain Nadal from the French Foreign Ministry. “We are ready to take her to the French embassy in Tehran, which would be a first step, but we also want the case dropped to allow her to go back to her family in France.” Iran says Reiss joined the street protests which erupted following the re-election of President Ahmadinejad. Paris has rejected the case against her as baseless, while admitting that she had photographed the protests and e-mailed the pictures to friends. The Foreign Ministry has called for her immediate release but the Tehran prosecutor said she must be punished for her crimes.