Oct 3, 1:48 PM EDT

Reporter jailed in Iran sues Iranian government

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Washington Post reporter who was detained for more than 18 months in Iran after being accused of espionage has filed a federal lawsuit against the Iranian government.

The lawsuit filed Monday by Jason Rezaian (reh-ZY'-ahn) together with his brother and mother accuses the Iranian government of subjecting him to torture and holding him hostage with the aim of "extorting concessions" from the U.S. government and others.

Rezaian was arrested in July 2014 and released in January 2016 as part of a prisoner exchange between the U.S. and Iran. Iranian officials never specified why Rezaian was targeted. He denied the charges.

The suit filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia seeks an unspecified amount of money under the terrorism exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act.

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