Update: American Reportedly Not Arrested; Denied Entry for No Visa
06 Jan 2011 12:40
The reported incident occurred in Norduz (also spelled Nordouz or Nordooz) in Iran's East Azerbaijan province. A small habitation in a sparsely populated valley, Norduz is the lone official crossing point on the 22-mile-long Iran-Armenia border. The Armenian village of Agarak is within walking distance, and the larger community of Meghri is a 15-minute drive. On the Iranian side, the villages of Duzal and Kordasht are approximately three miles to the east. The nearest sizable town, Jolfa, is 37 miles to the west. There are no major tourist attractions in the immediate vicinity, but the region is known for its scenery. -- Eds.
Xinhua | Jan 6
Iran denied earlier reports that it arrested an American woman on espionage charges, the local Arabic language satellite Al-Alam TV reported Thursday.
According to the report the Iranian border officials prevented her from entering the country via Armenia border due to her visa problem.
The American woman wanted to illegally enter Iran but she was prevented since she did not have a visa, the Al-Alam TV said, adding that she had been sent back to Armenia.
Iran Detains American Woman as Spy, Reports Say
NYT | Jan 6
People briefed on the affair, who requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to reporters, said the arrest seemed confusing since the woman, identified by the newspaper as Hall Talayan, had presented herself as an asylum-seeker when she entered Iran from Armenia.
By this account, the woman had told Iranian officials at the border town of Nordouz, 370 miles northwest of Tehran, that she would be killed if she returned to Armenia. She had personally vouchsafed that she had espionage equipment concealed in her teeth, these people said.
Iran Says American Woman Detained on Spy Charges
AP | Jan 6
Iranian authorities have detained a 55-year-old American woman on spying charges, a state-owned newspaper reported Thursday.
The daily IRAN said the woman had spying equipment hidden on her body when customs authorities detained her in the border town of Nordouz, 370 miles (600 kilometers) northwest of the capital Tehran. The report said she arrived in Iran from neighboring Armenia without a visa. It did not say when she was detained.
The woman is the fourth American Iran has arrested and accused of spying in less than two years.
Iran Arrests American Woman on Espionage Charges
Xinhua | Jan 6
The local Farsi-language IRAN newspaper said the woman who had set spying equipment in her teeth and entered Iran without visa via Armenia border was arrested by the security guards.
"The American woman whose name is Hall Talayan and had set technical spying equipment, microphone in her teeth was arrested by the (Iranian) customs guards in Nordouz," said the report.
Currently, two detained U.S. hikers, Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer, are held in an Iranian prison over unlawful entry into Iran's territory and on espionage charges. Another female U.S. hiker, Sarah Shourd, once jailed in Iran with [them], was released by Tehran's prosecutor in September on bail of 500,000 U.S. dollars due to her health situation.
Report: Iran Says American Caught as Spy
UPI | Jan 6
A 55-year-old American woman identified as Talayan Hall was arrested in Iran on espionage charges, an Iranian newspaper reported Thursday.
The woman's arrest had not yet been reported by other Iranian outlets and there was no official comment from government officials.
Iran Daily Says U.S. Woman Held on Spying Charges
Reuters | Jan 6
The report, which could not be immediately confirmed by officials, was published in a column in the state-owned daily Iran, which is not known for carrying accurate reports.