The visit lasted only ten minutes under supervision. That is, without the slightest freedom of speech. But this is the first time. The French ambassador to Iran was able to briefly “talk” to Cécile Colaire, a French woman detained in Iran since May 7, her support committee said in a statement Sunday, concerned about “the state of her physical and psychological health.”
“After 200 days of not hearing from Cecile, she has finally been granted consular access. French Ambassador to Iran Nicolas Roche was able to visit and speak with her this Wednesday, November 23rd,” said a press release from the support committee for Cecile Liberty, launched on Tuesday in Strasbourg. “Cecile didn’t have enough time to describe her daily life and assess her physical and mental health,” he continues. Cecile Kohler and her companion Jacques Paris were arrested in May while they were sightseeing in Iran. Tehran accuses them of espionage.
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According to her support committee, the teacher and trade unionist are “held in the Evin prison” in northern Iran. “She was already there during the deadly fire” that broke out there on October 15, the committee said. “She spent several months in solitary confinement, which was described as torture and against the rules and standards of the United Nations,” he denounces again, specifying that Cecile Kohler “shares a cell with several women today.”
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“To this day, she still does not have access to an independent lawyer, and she has not had direct contact with her family,” recalls the committee, specifying that thanks to the visit of the ambassador, Cecile Kohler was for the first time “in more than six months (…) to talk with someone outside the prison.” “I am very grateful to French diplomacy, which was able to secure, of course, not without difficulty, the opportunity for our ambassador to finally meet Cécile Kohler,” Thierry Moser, the committee’s lawyer, said in a separate press release.
“I would like to hope that this visit will allow Cecile to face the terrible ordeal that she has been unfairly subjected to for several months with renewed courage,” he added. Iran’s judiciary spokesman Masood Setayechi said on Tuesday that “the two arrested French spies,” Cécile Coler and her companion, “are still in custody” and that their “case” is “at the final decision stage.” without a specific date.