Shorts: Mideast

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Iranian sentenced to die for spying

Ali Ashtari, an Iranian businessman, was sentenced to death in a Tehran court late last month after confessing to being a Mossad agent, state media reported.

Ashtari, 43, was described as the owner of a company that sells communications and security equipment to the Iranian government.

Tehran officials said that Ashtari, under the Mossad’s orders, supplied faulty parts for Iran’s nuclear projects, some of which caused serious setbacks. — jta

Court won’t revoke press credentials

of French TV station

Israel’s High Court rejected a recent request to revoke the press credentials of the French TV station at the center of the Mohammed al Dura shooting incident.

The Israel Law Center, a human rights organization, alleged that France 2 TV presented a fraudulent report claiming that Israeli forces shot and killed 12-year-old Mohammed al Dura on Sept. 30, 2000 in the Gaza Strip.

The three-judge panel said the quality of journalistic work is not a criterion for receiving press credentials. — jta