Spanish man trekking to World Cup believed arrested in Iran



A Spanish man trekking from Madrid to Doha for the 2022 FIFA World Cup is believed to be below arrest in Iran the place he went lacking greater than three weeks in the past, his household mentioned Wednesday.

“We realized this morning from the (Spanish) overseas ministry that there is a 99% likelihood he (has been) arrested,” Celia Cogedor, the mom of 41-year-old trekker Santiago Sanchez, advised The Associated Press.

“We are stuffed with hope,” she mentioned.

Sanchez and his translator are believed to be in a jail in Tehran, the Spaniard’s mother and father mentioned.

Sanchez’s sister is due to meet Thursday with officers on the Spanish Foreign Ministry in Madrid to be taught additional particulars.

“We have gone from being in everlasting suspense to having a really massive ray of hope, so now we belief in the efforts of the embassy, which is the one that can formally inform us the state of affairs he’s in,” Santiago Sanchez advised the AP.

The overseas ministry mentioned in a press release that the Spanish embassy in Tehran is in contact with Iranian authorities about Sanchez. It declined to present additional particulars.

Iran is being engulfed by mass unrest, triggering fears about Sanchez’s destiny after he stopped contacting his household in Spain on Oct. 2, a day after he crossed the Iraq-Iran border. He had warned his household that communication is likely to be troublesome in Iran.

A Kurdish group known as the Hengaw Organization for Human Rights reported that Sanchez was taken away by Iranian safety forces after visiting the grave of Mahsa Amini, the 22-year-old whose dying in police custody sparked the present antigovernment protest motion.

The group, citing nameless sources, mentioned that Iranian intelligence brokers arrested him in Saqez, Amini’s hometown.

The Kurdish group is predicated simply throughout the border in Iraqi Kurdistan however has dependable connections in northwest Iran.

Neither Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs nor its mission to the United Nations responded to requests for remark.

The Spanish adventurer deliberate to go to Tehran, the Iranian capital, the place a tv station wished to interview him. His subsequent step would have been Bandar Abbas, a port in southern Iran the place he would hop on a ship to Qatar. But all traces of him vanished even earlier than he reached Tehran, his mother and father mentioned.

His mother and father reported him lacking on Oct. 17. They mentioned Spain’s police and diplomats had been serving to the household.

This was not Sanchez’s first time in Iran. In 2019 the fervent soccer fan cycled the same route to get from Madrid to Saudi Arabia.

His mother and father say they’re happy with his adventurous spirit and say his solely goals are to assist others and promote the Real Madrid soccer staff.

The demonstrations in Iran erupted on Sept. 16 over the dying of Amini, who was taken into custody by Iran’s morality police for allegedly not adhering to the nation’s strict Islamic gown code.

Tehran has violently cracked down on protesters and blamed overseas enemies and Kurdish teams in Iraq for fomenting the unrest, with out providing proof. The Iranian Intelligence Ministry mentioned authorities had arrested 9 foreigners, largely Europeans, over their alleged hyperlinks to the protests.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here