The related cases of other Iranian-U.S. dual nationals (Iran does not recognize dual nationality) have not been resolved. Wright reports:
According to the New York Times on August 23, a judge told Kian Tajbakhsh's wife, Bahar Malek, that he would be released in 10 to 15 days (between September 2 and 7) so that he could spend the last month of his wife's pregnancy with her. But such promises have not been honored in the past.
New York-based social scientist Kian Tajbakhsh and California businessman Ali Shakeri are in solitary confinement in Evin Prison. Both were picked up in the same three-day period in early May when Esfandiari was arrested.
Parnaz Azima, a correspondent for U.S.-funded Radio Farda, is out on bail of more than $600,000. . . .
The Government of Iran created a special section of the Intelligence Ministry to suppress efforts at a "soft revolution" funded by the U.S. At the administration's request, Congress appropriated $75 million for "democratization" efforts in Iran, which Tehran of course sees as a complement to the administration's push for regime change. When the intelligence ministry could not find any programs in Iran actually supported by this money (Iranian spies are apparently unaware of how ineffectively and slowly money for such programs is disbursed), they arrested a number of Iranian-Americans, including Esfandiari and Tajbakhsh, who have been openly and legally carrying out activities in Iran with the knowledge and consent of the government for years.
Whatever may or may not be happening in the confrontation between the Ahmadinejad and Bush governments, these people have nothing to do with it, except that they have been working to promote engagement between the two countries for years. We need such people with us now more than ever. Let's hope that the Iranian government will cease treating these innocent people as hostages to its official relations with the U.S.