Latest Newsletter🍵 New alcohol/cancer study in AsiansRead


Chinese-Born American Jailed in Iran for Allegedly Being a U.S. Spy

    Asian America Daily - in under 5 minutes

    Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories, to your inbox daily, for free!

    Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive

    A Chinese-born American graduate student at Princeton University, who was arrested in Iran last year on allegations of espionage, has been convicted and sentenced to 10 years in jail.

    Xiyue Wang was conducting research on the Qajar dynasty for his Ph.D. in August 2016 when he was arrested. The 37-year-old was said to be merely looking into the cultural history of Iran as his field of study of late 19th and 20th-century Eurasian history, according to The Guardian.

    Iranian Judiciary representative Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Eje’i stated via its official news agency Mizan Online that a dual national had been convicted of being “an infiltrating American agent.” 

    “He had entered the country through a special connection but the ministry of intelligence identified him and arrested him,” Mohseni-Eje’i was quoted as saying.

    “It became clear that he was involved in the infiltration project and the initial court has sentenced him to 10 years but this could be appealed.”

    Mizan further alleged that Wang pursued espionage “through the cover of being a researcher”.

    According to the agency, Wang had been busy collecting data for a digital archive intended for “the world’s biggest anti-Iran spying organization”.

    He entered the country under the cover of a master’s student,” the report said, “but has been gathering secret and top secret [information]” for the U.S. State Department, the Harvard Kennedy School and the British Institute of Persian Studies.

    Iranian authorities said that the allegations were based on an anonymous “informed source.”

    Wang now has less than 20 days to appeal his sentence.

    Princeton officials have stated that they are now coordinating with Wang’s family and lawyer to process his release.

    In a statement, the U.S. State Department called for the release of all U.S. citizens in jail in Iran.

    “The Iranian regime continues to detain US citizens and other foreigners on fabricated national-security related changes,” a statement said.

    “The safety and security of US citizens remain a top priority. All US citizens, especially dual nationals considering travel to Iran, should carefully read our latest travel warning.”‎

    Wang, who was born in China in the 80s, attended Harvard University from 2006 to 2008, and eventually worked for the International Committee of the Red Cross in Afghanistan.

    Support our Journalism with a Contribution

    Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.

    Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.

    However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.

    We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way.  Thank you for everyone's support. We love you all and can't appreciate you guys enough.

    Support NextShark

    Mastercard, Visa, Amex, Discover, Paypal