Nizar Zakka delivering a speech during the MENA ICT Forum conference in Jordan in March 2013. (AP)

June 10, 2019

Lebanese national and IT expert Nizar Zakka is to be released within hours from Iran and handed to Lebanese Hezbollah, a decision taken only “upon the request and mediation of Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah”, Fars News Agency reported citing an informed source.

According to Fars News Agency, no negotiations were held at the state or individual level, except with Nasrallah.

“This is done solely because of the respect and dignity the Islamic Republic has for Hassan Nasrallah,” the Fars News Agency report said citing the source, adding that Zakka was “an American spy who was arrested by the IRGC in 2015.”

Zakka was detained in Iran in 2015 for “collaborating against the state.”

Lebanon state news agency NNA last week quoted the foreign ministry as saying that Iran had agreed amnesty for Nizar Zakka, an information technology expert who was sentenced to 10 years in prison in 2016 and fined $4.2 million.

NNA also quoted media representatives on behalf of Zakka’s family as saying the initiative to release him had been successful, and thanking President Michel Aoun and Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil.

Zakka, who also has permanent US residency, had been invited to Iran by a government official in 2015 but then disappeared after attending a conference in Tehran.

State media announced later that year that he had ties to US military and intelligence services and had been detained by the Revolutionary Guards.

Al Arabiya

About Track Persia

Track PersiaTrack Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.