Iran accuses detained French couple of ‘undermining’ security | The Guardian Nigeria News

Iran on Wednesday accused a French couple detained in May while on vacation of having “undermined the security” of the country, the judicial authority said.

Cécile Kohler, head of the French teachers’ union, and her partner Jacques Paris were arrested in early May while on Easter vacation in the Islamic Republic. They are accused by the authorities of seeking to incite workers’ protests.

The two men are “charged with association and collusion with the aim of undermining the security of the country”, judiciary spokesman Massoud Setayeshi told reporters in Tehran.

Iran said they were accused of “entering the country to sow chaos and destabilize society”.

The French government condemned their arrest as “baseless” and demanded their immediate release.

“These two people are currently in custody,” Setayeshi said, adding that “the prosecution is handling this case.”

In June, Iranian authorities announced that they had arrested a left-wing activist suspected of “inciting sedition and unrest within the working class”, and who they said was suspected of having met the couple. French.

Iranian schools have been hit by months of industrial action by teachers demanding pay rises, with regular protests outside Education Ministry offices across the country, including demanding the release of colleagues arrested during from previous gatherings.

In April, Rasoul Bodaghi, a member of the teachers’ union, was sentenced to five years in prison for taking part in the protests, according to a human rights group.

In May, hundreds of people demonstrated in several cities, after a series of government measures including the lifting of subsidies on flour and the increase in the prices of certain foodstuffs.

Kohler and Paris are among the latest Western citizens to be detained in Iran, in what activists say is a deliberate policy aimed at wringing concessions from the West – charges denied by Tehran.