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IRAN - June 8 - Jewish Group Seeks Amnesty For Suspected Spies.

Tehran radio reports 4 Jewish leaders representing Neturei Karta and who oppose the state of Israel, have pleaded for pardons for Jewish suspects accused of spying for Israel. The radio says the 4, who are visiting Iran, issued a statement that "implicitly accepted" the charges against the 13, but said the accused had been "misused by Zionism". They called for the defendants to be "pardoned or have their penalties reduced". 8 of the 13 Jewish defendants have pleaded guilty, 4 have pleaded innocent and one has said he passed information to Israel but did not think that his action constituted espionage. (Israel has denied that any of the 13 Jews were its spies.) The 4 Neturei Karta leaders arrived in Tehran from New York on June 7. (Neturei Karta, based in Jerusalem, is a group that criticises Israel as a blasphemous attempt by man to do what only God can do - that is, create a Jewish state.) According to Iranian Jewish officials, the visitors came at the invitation of Iran's Foreign Ministry. On June 6, defence lawyers presented their final submission in writing to the court. The lawyers said the confessions made by the defendants in prison are invalid and that the state must show evidence that secret information changed hands in order to prove espionage under Iranian law.
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Publication:APS Diplomat Recorder
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:7IRAN
Date:Jun 10, 2000
Words:219
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