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Iran releases family of imprisoned filmmaker

An opposition website says Iranian authorities have released family members of an imprisoned documentary filmmaker after briefly detaining them.

The kaleme.com website said late Thursday the wife, son, two daughters, parents and brothers of filmmaker Mohammad Nourizad were freed hours after they taken into custody. They were picked up after inquiring about Nourizad's reportedly failing health.

The website said Nourizad's wife was taken to the hospital because she felt sick immediately after being detained.

Nourizad is serving a three-and-a-half-year prison sentence for spreading propaganda against the government and insulting the country's leaders.

Opposition websites have recently reported that Nourizad has been hospitalized because of his failing health. He also is reported to have started a hunger strike last week.