Israeli Charged With Spying for Iran in Critical Condition After Attempted Suicide

The woman is one of five people arrested earlier this year by Israeli authorities. 'I'm shocked, but not surprised," her lawyer said following the suicide attempt

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An Iranian flag flutters in Iran's Bushehr nuclear power plant, in early 2020.
An Iranian flag flutters in Iran's Bushehr nuclear power plant, in early 2020.Credit: ATTA KENARE / AFP

An Israeli woman of Iranian heritage who was charged with spying for Iran has attempted suicide and is in critical condition.

Her arrest occurred in January, and she was under house arrest when she attempted to take her own life.

London-based Iran International, an opposition-affiliated TV network, first reported about the incident, but did not immediately publish any further details concerning the case.

She is one of four women, all of Iranian heritage, who were accused of providing photos of sites in Israel to an Iranian intelligence operative who contacted them on Facebook and WhatsApp. All four women deny any intention to harm Israel's security and said they didn't know the person they were talking to is an Iranian agent.

Their handler asked them for photos of the prime minister's official residence in Jerusalem, the U.S. embassy and other locations.

If convicted of contact with a foreign agent, the Israeli women face up to 15 years behind bars. Three of them were also charged with providing information that could harm Israel's security, which carries a maximum sentence of three years.

The husband of one of them is charged with aiding his wife, after he drove her to one of the sites she photographed for the Iranian handler.

"I'm shocked, but not surprised," said the woman's lawyer, Ben-Zion Citrin, adding that the authorities "took a normal family and ruined their lives. [My client] cannot bear this impossible situation she finds herself in."

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