Iranian state television showed hospital images Wednesday of the Iranian diplomat who has accused the CIA of torturing him during his detention in Iraq.
State TV also reported that the Iraqi ambassador to Iran and an official from the International Committee of the Red Cross visited Jalal Sharafi in the hospital Wednesday.
Sharafi was shown in a hospital bed with injuries to his right foot, while Iraqi ambassador Majid Sheikh and Peter G. Stocker from the ICRC examined him.
During the examination, the voice of a doctor could be heard describing how Sharafi had been beaten by a cable during his detention. Claims of torture have not been independently verified.
Following his visit, Stocker confirmed to The Associated Press that he saw wounds on Sharafi’s body that “were several weeks old,” but said he did not know how the injuries occurred.
“I cannot say who did it and where it happened,” he said. “I can only say that it happened during his detention.”
Earlier in the week, Sharafi’s doctors reported that holes had been drilled into his foot, but the TV images were not clear enough to indicate whether the small, red marks on his foot were indeed holes.
Doctors also reported earlier that he had suffered a broken nose, serious injuries to his back, bleeding in his digestive system, and damage to his ears. None of these injuries has been independently verified, nor were they discernible from the TV footage.
A spokeswoman for the ICRC in Tehran, Katayoun Hosseinnejad, confirmed the visit took place and said it was initiated by the Iranians. Stocker was not immediately available for comment, and Hosseinnejad said she could not comment on whether Sharafi’s injuries indicated torture.
Sharafi was released from Iraq last week and later reported that the CIA had questioned him about Iran’s relations with Iraq and assistance to various Iraqi groups during his detention.
U.S. officials allege that Iran provides money and weapons to Iraqi Shiite militias; Iran denies the charges.
At the time of his disappearance, Iran alleged Sharafi had been abducted by an Iraqi military unit commanded by American forces — a charge repeated by several Iraqi Shiite lawmakers. U.S. authorities have denied any role in his disappearance.