Washington – A Navy veterana medical furlough says he is sick with coronavirus symptoms and requests a humanitarian evacuation to the United States for medical treatment.
Michael White was admitted on Wednesday to a coronavirus patient ward in Iran and has been experiencing fever, fatigue, a cough and shortness of breath since his pine last week, according to a statement by Jon Franks, a family spokesman, to The Associated Press.
White from Imperial Beach, California, “is an immune-defended cancer patient and his situation is urgent,” Franks said. White has been tested for coronavirus but the results have not returned.
White was arrested in July 2018 when he visited a girlfriend in Iran and was later convicted of insulting Iran’s top leader and publishing private information.
He is among tens of thousands of prisoners granted medical birds by Iran as the country tries to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
On Wednesday night, former New Mexico government Bill Richardson reached out to Iran on behalf of the family to request an immediate humanitarian medical evacuation.
“Not only will this enable Michael to receive further treatment here in the United States, but it will help protect Iranian citizens from further exposure and free their own medical staff to treat their own citizens,” the statement says .
Iran has granted temporary relief to tens of thousands of prisoners in recent weeks to try to contain a virus that officials fear could kill millions in the country.
In September, White’s mother, Joanne, told CBS News that her son’s health was deteriorating and she was “really worried about him dying over there.”