Iran’s foreign minister has lambasted the United States for refusing to grant medical furlough to several Iranian scientists held in US prisons without any charges despite an outbreak of the novel coronavirus.
In a tweet, Mohammad Javad Zarif said the inmates are being held in harrowing conditions.
“US even refuses medical furlough—amid #COVID19—for innocent men jailed in horrific facilities,” Zarif tweeted.
The top diplomat said Washington declines to release Iranian scientists even after they were exonerated by its own courts.
“US has taken several Iranian scientists hostage—without charge or on spurious sanctions charges—& not releasing them; even when its OWN courts reject the absurd charges,” he added.
He made the comment after an Iranian scientist, held in a US jail without charge, slammed his detention conditions as “inhumane.” Sirous Asgari said inmates at the Alexandria detention centre in the state of Louisiana have no access to protective masks and hand sanitizers.
Asgari is an engineering professor who was acquitted in November of federal charges of stealing trade secrets related to his academic work. However, the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement has imprisoned him indefinitely.