Iran claims to have broken a CIA spy racket to arrest 17 agents
- Iranian State television has announced that it captured 17
Central Intelligence Agency(CIA) spies and some have been sentenced to death.
- The announcement has come three months after US reimposed sanctions on
- Last week, Iran also seized a British
oil tankerin the Strait of Hormuzafter Britain captured an Iranian oil tanker near Gibraltar.
The spies reportedly worked for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
The state television quoted the Intelligence Ministry which claimed to have broken up a CIA spy ring and captured 17 suspects. A ministry official said some of those arrested have been sentenced to death, the semi-official
“The identified spies were employed in sensitive and vital private sector centres in the economic, nuclear, infrastructural, military and cyber areas, where they collected classified information,” as per a ministry statement on the state television.
The latest announcement is significant as US reimposed sanctions on the country, in May. After a series of events including attacks on oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz, Iran dropped off a US military drone. In turn, US dropped an Iranian drone. Iran also seized the British oil tanker, intensifying the already high tensions in the Gulf region.
In June, Iran alleged that it had exposed a large cyber network run by CIA and that it led to several arrests of CIA spies in different countries.
However, it is not clear whether the latest arrests were linked to the June announcement.