She was supposed to be in Minnesota this weekend giving the commencement address at her alma mater, but instead journalist Roxana Saberi was hospitalized in Tehran after two weeks on a hunger strike, according to an AP report. An American journalist of Iranian and Japanese parents, the Fargo native went on a liquid-only fast on April 21 in protest of an eight-year sentence for allegedly spying, but began refusing water after Iranian officials told the press accounts of her hunger strike were false. The 32-year-old was taken to a clinic on Friday and released after a day.
As World Press Freedom Day passed Sunday, a hunger strike in solidarity with Saberi extended into its sixth day by Reporters without Borders activists in Paris, while hundreds of supporters and friends held a vigil for Saberi on the bridge linking Saberi’s hometown with the neighboring city of Moorhead, Minn. Saberi was scheduled to give the commencement speech at her alma mater, Moorhead’s Concordia College this weekend.
According to the World Association of Newspapers, 125 journalists were imprisoned last year, including 12 in the region where Saberi is now detained.
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