Home News Belgian humanitarian Olivier Vandecasteele sentenced to 28 years in prison in Iran

Belgian humanitarian Olivier Vandecasteele sentenced to 28 years in prison in Iran

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Belgian humanitarian Olivier Vandecasteele, detained in solitary confinement in Iran since February, has been sentenced to 28 years in prison, a spokesperson for his family announced on Wednesday December 14, stressing that they did not know the charges. against him.

“The family is devastated”Olivier Van Steirtegem, spokesman for the family, told AFP, adding that she had been informed by the Belgian government.

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“There is no plan B”he continued. ” You imagine ? If there is no solution, he will stay in prison until 2050, he will be almost 70 years old”he added.

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According to his family, Olivier Vandecasteele was arrested on February 24 in Tehran without reason.

On Thursday, the Belgian Constitutional Court has ” suspended “ a Belgian-Iranian treaty for the transfer of convicts that the Belgian government had adopted in July by Parliament to allow the return of Olivier Vandecasteele. His relatives said to each other “extremely disappointed”.

An “innocent hostage of a legal-political battle”

The transfer treaty, signed in March 2022 between Brussels and Tehran shortly after the arrest of Olivier Vandecasteele, has been the subject of multiple appeals in Belgium by Iranian opponents in exile.

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In the eyes of the latter, the text opens the way to the surrender to Tehran and a possible pardon of the Iranian diplomat Assadollah Assadi sentenced in Belgium in 2021 to 20 years in prison for a planned attack. “terrorist” against the Iranian opposition.

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At a press conference in Brussels last week, the imprisoned humanitarian’s sister, Nathalie Vandecasteele, denounced the “unspeakable psychological torture” suffered by his brother, “innocent hostage of a legal-political battle” between Iran and Belgium.

“For 290 days, he has been cut off from all human contact. […] The days pass and our family breaks down. We are sad, devastated, arms and legs cut off by this injustice.she had declared under the gaze of her mother, her eyes also red with emotion.

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