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Valuch case reaches Brussels

DIPLOMATS in Brussels are discussing the case of 26-year-old Slovak Matej Valuch, who has been detained by Iranian authorities for alleged espionage.

DIPLOMATS in Brussels are discussing the case of 26-year-old Slovak Matej Valuch, who has been detained by Iranian authorities for alleged espionage.

“It is very serious and we in the [European] Commission are aware of it,” said Maroš Šefčovič, vice-president of the EC and commissioner for inter-institutional relations and administration, as quoted by the Sme daily.

Šefčovič has already discussed the case with the head of EU diplomacy, Catherine Ashton, who wants to solve the problem through diplomatic channels.

“Therefore we will not provide any details, since it might damage Mr Valuch’s chances of returning home,” said EC spokesperson Anthonio Gravili, as quoted by Sme.

Meanwhile, the Slovak Foreign Affairs Ministry confirmed that Slovakia’s consul to Iran had met Valuch.

Iran suspects Valuch of violating national security, claiming he was working as a CIA agent, something to which he apparently confessed in a video filmed by the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence. Valuch’s family does not believe that he is involved in espionage. Several experts approached by the Slovak media say that Valuch is a victim of Iranian propaganda.

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