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Four Afghans face trial for rape of French tourist in Iran

Tehran and the Alborz Mountains
Tehran and the Alborz Mountains Public domain/Hansueli Krapf/Hansueli Krapf/Hansueli Krapf

Four Afghans face trial in Iran on Sunday for the alleged rape and robbery of a French tourist in the mountains north of Tehran. The woman says that another Afghan helped her, fingting off the attackers and taking her to where she was staying.

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The four men, undocumented immigrants to Iran from neighbouring Afghanistan, are accused of raping and robbing the Frenchwoman, who was 23 at the time, in September 2015, according to Iranian press agency Irib.

The victim's identity has not been revealed but Irib has published her account of the alleged attack.

"I came to Iran as a tourist and was exploring the north of Tehran [province] when four Afghans approached me," she told police, according to Irib. "They robbed me and raped me. I couldn't defended myself."

Another Afghan came to her rescue.

"He helped me and even fought the others," the woman said, adding that he took her to the main road and then to the place where she was staying.

One of the alleged attackers was arrested shortly afterwards, hiding in the mountains.

The three others were caught heading for the Afghan border.

The trial may not last long, if the accused accept they are guilty.

They could be sentenced to death.

Attacks on foreign tourists are rare in Iran.

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