Swedish Citizens Johan Floderus and Saeed Azizi have been Released from Unlawful Detention in Iran in Exchange for Convicted Iranian Hamid Nouri

June 15, 2024 – Hostage Aid Worldwide welcomes the release of Swedish citizens Johan Floderus and Saeed Azizi from unlawful detention in Iran. 

Johan Floderus is an EU official who was arrested on April 17, 2022 on allegations of “gathering information for Israel under covert projects.”

Saeed Azizi is a dual national who was arrested on November 12, 2023 shortly after returning from Sweden and sentenced to 5 years for allegedly conspiring and colluding to commit a crime. 

Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson announced today that both men were released in exchange for convicted Iranian Hamid Nouri.

We are grateful that both Johan and Saeed have finally returned home and are reuniting with their loved ones and wish them all the best on their road of recovery from this ordeal. 

However, we respectfully ask the Swedish Government to clarify why Swedish disaster medicine Dr. Ahmadreza Djalali was left behind in Iran. Ahmadreza has been unlawfully detained for 2,973 days and is sentenced to death. Why wasn’t he included in such a high profile swap? Why weren’t all Swedish citizens as well as other EU citizens arbitrarily detained in Iran included in this exchange? 

As much as we are happy that both Johan and Saeed are finally free to get back to their lives, this joy is marred by the fact that Ahmadreza and at least another Swede were left behind; and the question remains: what will happen to Dr. Djalali who faces imminent execution any day?

Today, more than ever, Hostage Aid Worldwide reiterates its call to the European governments to form a united task force and take a unified approach to counter and stop Iran’s hostage diplomacy and to free the remaining EU hostages held in Iran. Enough using innocent citizens as pawns in this despicable game for political gain.