Federal prosecutors said they had charged four Iranians with plotting to kidnap journalist and activist Masih Alinejad, who is in Brooklyn, and is an outspoken critic of the Iranian government. An American-Iranian who lives in California, was arrested earlier this month and charged with providing funds to the plot.
An indictment released by prosecutors said the Iranian agents named in the indictment, had hired a New York-based private investigator, under false pretences to film Ms Alinejad and other family. They said they also researched the option of spiriting her away from the city on speedboat, and possibly taking her to Venezuela, an ally.
Ms Alinejad said she would not let the plot silence or intimidate her.
“The Republic is that close to me – even here in Brooklyn,” she said, speaking to CBS News. And this is the nature of the Islamic Republic, kidnapping, the dissidents and executing them.”
Yet, she said she would not stop her work, which draws an enormous audience on social media.
Asked if she was going to continue writing, she said: “Oh yeah, I am not going to give up.”
Indeed, she suggested the fact that the authorities were keen to silence her, shows “the government in Iran is scared of me”.She added: “It gives me hope that the government is scared of the voice of people, because I’m the voice of people.”
Prosecutors said the plot to snatch Ms Alinejad was part of a broader scheme to lure three individuals in Canada and a fifth person in the United Kingdom, along with individuals in the United Arab Emirates, to Iran.
It said the idea of using a speedboat only was raised after efforts to persuade Ms Alinejad to trick her to visit a third country, in the Middle East, failed.
Original News : https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/iran-kidnap-brooklyn-masih-alinejad-b1884267.html