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Iran state TV’s English channel says anchorwoman held in US

TEHRAN, Iran – The English-language arm of Iran’s state television broadcaster is reporting that its prominent American-born news anchor was arrested after flying into the United States.

Press TV broke into its broadcast on Wednesday to report that Marzieh Hashemi, born Melanie Franklin of New Orleans, was arrested after arriving at St. Louis Lambert International Airport on Sunday.

The broadcaster, citing her family, said Hashemi was taken into FBI custody and brought to the Washington area.

A call to the FBI rang unanswered early on Wednesday morning. The bureau did not immediately respond to a written request for comment. Several local jails around Washington that house federal inmates also said they did not have her in custody.

Hashemi’s reported arrest comes amid heightened tensions between Iran and the U.S.

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