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Canada To Explore Options in Iran Murder Trial - 2004-07-25


Canada says it is exploring its legal and diplomatic options to protest an Iranian court's acquittal of a secret agent charged with the murder of a Canadian journalist.

Canada's foreign affairs office said Sunday it will press Iran to act responsibly and hold a fair trial in the case of journalist Zahra Kazemi.

On Saturday, an Iranian court cleared an intelligence agent of her murder and moved to close the case.

The victim's lawyer, Iranian Nobel Laureate Shirin Ebadi, says she will appeal the acquittal, saying she will take the case to an international court, if necessary.

Lawyers representing Ms. Kazemi's family argue that the agent is a scapegoat and that another official delivered the fatal blow.

Zahra Kazemi, a 54 year old Canadian freelance journalist of Iranian origin, was arrested last year for taking photographs outside a Tehran's notorious Evin prison during a student protest. She died from blows to the head while under interrogation.

Information for this report is provided by AP and AFP.

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