Iran’s Mehr News Agency confirmed today that Iranian authorities believe that IRGC Brig. Gen. Ali Reza Asgari, former deputy defense minister of Iran, is in the United States. Gen. Asgari disappeared in 2007. Uskowi on Iran reported at the time that Gen. Asgari had defected to the US. Asgari was believed to be living in Virginia.
On Tuesday, The Iranian foreign ministry spokesman said 11 Iranians were being detained in the US. The spokesman named only the missing nuclear scientist, Shahram Amiri. Mehr’s report identified the other ten, including Gen. Asgari.
Iran has accused Saudi authorities of arresting and handing over Shahram Amiri to the US authorities. Amiri is one of Iran’s top nuclear scientists who was reportedly working at newly disclosed Fardu uranium enrichment plant near Qum. He was on a hajj trip to Mecca when he disappeared. The Saudis today denied the charge.
“Saudi authorities searched for him after being informed of his disappearance in Medina and at all the hospitals, hotels and centers in Mecca but they could not find him,” Saudi Foreign Ministry spokeman Osama al-Nogali told reporters in Riyadh.