Iranian Foreign Ministry Says Utah State Sen. Didn't Disclose Gov't. Job During Visit
Iran's Foreign Ministry says a Utah state senator who traveled to Iran in May did not clarify his job as senator in his visa application.
Ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi told reporters Monday that a visit by Sen. Jim Dabakis was technically legal, but that he did not make his government position clear in his application and never met with any Iranian officials.
Dabakis is openly gay and reports on his visit set off a firestorm in Iran, where hard-liners accused him of being part of a Western project to "infiltrate" the country.
Dabakis said since he traveled on vacation as a private individual, he didn't feel like he needed to inform "the Ministry of Anything." However he said he "felt bad" about the growing mess his visit caused.