Sons of Iranian-Canadian professor who died in Tehran prison arrive in Canada

Kavous Seyed-Emami, a 63-year-old sociology professor was held at Tehran’s Evin prison this year

The sons of an Iranian-Canadian professor who died in prison in Tehran arrived in Canada on Thursday, a day after Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland pressured Iran to allow their mother to leave the country as well.

Freeland issued a statement welcoming Ramin and Mehran Seyed-Emami to Canada as they arrived at Vancouver International Airport.

“At the same time, we were outraged to learn that their mother, Maryam Mombeini, Mr. Seyed-Emami’s widow, was barred from leaving Iran for no apparent reason,” she said.

“We call on the government of Iran to immediately give Maryam Mombeini, a Canadian citizen, the freedom to return home.”

Freeland said Canada is continuing to demand answers from Iran on the circumstances surrounding the death of Kavous Seyed-Emami, a 63-year-old sociology professor who was being held at Tehran’s notorious Evin prison earlier this year. Iranian authorities have said Seyed-Emami’s death was a suicide, but the family and others have questioned that finding.

Saying goodbye to their mother was emotional, said Ramin, a musician who performs under the stage name King Raam.

“They’re trying to prevent us from rebuilding our lives,” he told reporters at the airport.

“She said I just want you guys to be safe and away from this horrible place. Don’t ever come back.”

He said his mother’s Iranian passport has been confiscated to intimidate them from telling their story. She is with friends, he said, and has spoke directly with Freeland, who assured them she will make it to Canada.

Omar Alghabra, parliamentary secretary for the foreign affairs minister, said the government is “fully committed to reuniting them with their mother and we’ll exercise all diplomatic channels and all actions before us to see their mother reunited with them.”

Seyed-Emami was a professor of sociology at Imam Sadeq University in Tehran and the managing director of the Persian Heritage Wildlife Foundation. He had been arrested on Jan. 24.

Last month, Tehran prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi said authorities had arrested several unidentified people on suspicion of spying under the cover of scientific and environmental projects.

Amy Smith, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Dead rabbits found at Comox Valley Exhibition Grounds stoke concerns about Nanaimo virus

A B.C. wildlife veterinarian says a few of the dead bunnies will be sent for diagnosis next week.

Courtenay-Comox MLA talks water bottling business in Merville

Ronna-Rae Leonard remained neutral when asked if she opposes the proposed business

Pickleball courts to be built at Highland Park

Courtenay Rotary announces project Wednesday

UPDATE: Arrest made in north Courtenay shooting incident

Police have arrested one man in relation to a shooting north of… Continue reading

Vancouver Island’s Best Videos of the Week

A look at some of the best video stories from the past week ending March 16, 2018

Salmon Arm community cheers on Natalie Wilkie as she wins first gold medal

Local skier tops the podium in 7.5km race at the PyeongChang Paralympics

Experts: Society has a role in trying to prevent domestic violence

Experts are speaking out following the murder of a woman and her son in Ontario

Northern lights chasers in Canada discover new type named ‘Steve’

Phenomenon linked to a powerful current created by charged particles in Earth’s upper atmosphere

Progress on fixing Phoenix pay system backlog could be short-lived: Ottawa

Feds have said they won’t try to recover money overpaid until all outstanding issues are fixed

Washington state backs B.C. in pipeline dispute

Governor Jay Inslee says he is ‘allied’ with the province on Trans Mountain expansion projection

SAY WHAT? Readers weigh in on high-speed rail to U.S.

B.C. to contribute $300,000 to a million-dollar business study on the proposed project

B.C.-based CEO charged with conspiring to sell unhackable phones to criminals

Vincent Ramos of Richmond, was arrested last week in Seattle in years-long undercover operation

Public meeting planned to discuss protection of Union Bay’s drinking water

Newly formed Union Bay Watershed Protection Society to host meeting March 19

Most Read