Iran is holding a US Navy veteran from Imperial Beach, California, according to the man’s mother. Joanne White says Michael, 46, disappeared in July 2018 and was arrested on unspecified charges. He was visiting Iran to see his girlfriend.
At least three other Americans are currently serving jail sentences in Iran.
“My heart aches for him…I just want to see him home safe and sound,” Joanne told CNN, adding that he has had cancer in the past and suffers from asthma.
The State Department told White her son was in a prison when officials spoke with her three weeks ago, she said.
Relations between Washington and Tehran continue to plummet as Iran expands its influence across the Middle East and beyond. Currently, the Islamic Republic has a strong say in the domestic affairs of Yemen, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.
Meanwhile, Iran is flexing its muscles on two other fronts. It’s planning joint naval exercises with Russia in the Caspian Sea in the “near future.” Tehran also intends dispatching warships to the Atlantic in March – close to American waters.