Iran Agent Freed by France Arrives in Iran

May 19, 2010 Updated: October 1, 2015

Iranian agent Ali Vakili Rad arrives at Imam Khomeini Airport as he addresses journalists in Tehran, on May 18, 2010, after his release from a French prison. (Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images)
Iranian agent Ali Vakili Rad arrives at Imam Khomeini Airport as he addresses journalists in Tehran, on May 18, 2010, after his release from a French prison. (Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images)
PARIS—Ali Vakili Rad, the man who assassinated an exiled prime minister in 1991, is now back in Tehran, only two days after French student Clotilde Reiss was released by Iranian authorities and sent back to France.

Rad, who had been condemned to 18 years jail for murdering Shapour Bakhtiar, then a refugee in Paris protected by French intelligence, could have been released earlier. Sorin Margulis, his lawyer quoted by France Info radio, “the Reiss case only made things more complicated and delayed the liberation of my client.”

Margulis denied any link between Reiss and Rad’s coincidental releases. Socialist spokeperson Benoit Hamon however said on France 2 television that “to try to explain today that there was no compensation … is simply to consider people dumb.”

Rad left France on the afternoon of May 18 by an Iran Air flight. He was welcomed, reports France 2 television, by two Iranian officials: a diplomat and a Parliament member.