Sunday, December 21, 2008

Harassing a prisoner for annulling the Quaran

Azizi is the name of the head of section 7 of the notorious prison Evin, in which thousands of prisoners are being tortured and harassed. The most common punishment used on a prisoner is to abandon them in a solitary confinement.

Hamidreza Mohammadi, imprisoned in section 7, has been charged with insulting the holy book Qoran and inciting revolt to overthrow the regime, and has been sentenced to 11 years imprisonment. He said that he was harassed and insulted after which he was sent to solitary confinement in section 240. After six days of psychological torture in solitary confinement, he was sent to be among dangerous inmates in the public ward.

Mr.Mohammadi has said he faces the danger of being deported to Rajaii shahr prison, a place known to be used for pressurizing prisoners into false confessions. Despite the fact that prison laws have distinctively reiterated on the separation of political prisoners from criminals, as Mohammadi reminded the head of prison of the law, Azizi had replied "I am the law!"
It is said that Hamidreza Mohammadi who has actually stamped all seven pages of the Quoran as void of authenticity has been badly harassed and deprived of having an attorney.

Apart from Mr.Mohammadi, Ahmad Ghassaban has also been sent to the criminal ward 8 of Evin prison, for having undermined prison code of conduct, is also undergoing much distress and harassment.

It is known that these wards are used to increase pressure on political prisoners, and are being used by prison authorities since the latest change in prison organizations.

It is important to note that the mixing of political prisoners with normal criminals is a sign of implosion within regime ranks who cannot even abide by their own laws.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Students harassed in prison for informing whereabouts of Alaei brothers

Hood Yazerlou, student of Industrial management of Massoomein University of the religious city of Quom, who was arbitrarily arrested on 24 May 2008, for no clarified reason, has been transferred to solitary confinement since 7 December in 209 section of Evin prison and is under immense pressure.

Hood had informed his family during a visit about the transfer of Kamyar and Arash Alaei (two Aids specialists also arrested under charges of being in contact with the US) to solitary confinement.

The two brothers are founders of the triangular system of clinics established to curb Aids and are members of the Asian society, and have been in prison since June this year. In this regard, Hassan Haddad, deputy prosecutor general for security was quoted to have stated "The US is infiltrating Iran, and apart from using tough measures they use methods to attract people to their cause".

According to information received by Human Rights activists for Democracy in Iran, Mr.Yazerloo has been transferred to solitary confinement and is deprived of basic warmth and sanitary facilities under the present cold weather. He has been deprived of blankets and windows leading to his cell have been left open intentionally by prison officials as a means of torture. Hood (nearly 21 years old) is spending day and night under freezing conditions. He is left in unbearable conditions as a weak light is always on so as to prevent his sleep (if any).

Hood Yazerloo has been under these horrendous situations for the past 6 months. During the first thirty seven days of his solitary confinement, his prison conditions and sanitary was extremely poor as the result of which his lungs were infected and eventually he was coughing blood, but any medical assistance for him was prevented by prison officials.

Mr.Yazerloo, 21, was arbitrarily taken in to detention, after he came back from visiting his Aunt who is a member of the PMOI stationed in Iraq.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Four deprived University students end up in Evin Prison

Sadegh Shojaii, Mehdieh Golroo, Majid Dorri and Saiid Feizollahzade, the four students who had been deprived of their studies by the University Allameh Tabatabaii, have been arrested on Monday 24 November, after a sit-in and then transferred to Evin prison.

According to the students committee of Human Rights reporters, the four had begun a sit-in in front of the University which drew attention and support from other students.

The four students had been deprived after there were protests in Allameh for the shut down of Student press and clashes and harassments caused by the security forces of the University in the spring of 2007.

Their families had joined their protest in support of their loved ones outside the University.

Before being arrested, Ms. Mehdieh Golroo had spoken of the harassment by the University guards and said; "It was dawn, all four of us were sleep. Suddenly we were confronted with 25 people who dragged us out of the University Campus. I told them they have no right to speak and treat students like this, but the security agent began using foul language and begun hitting me instead, slapping me so much that I felt half of my face had gone paralyzed and swollen.".

At least 500 students rushed to support the four subjects and their demands; to be allowed to study.

It is noticeable that the Right to Education is one of the basic rights of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, article 26, and the Iranian constitution has also accepted this. But in reaction to the explosive situation and the student's activities, the Islamic Republic officials use the disciplinary committees created in the Universities to curb student movements.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Two related to the Bahai faith arrested

According to Shole Allah Verdi Gorji , her parents , Sonya Tabibian and Tarazallah, both Bahais, are being held in Sari's Intelligence Ministry.

"When we approached my parents' house we realized it was in a mess for some reason. Some o the books and documents had also been taken. There had been no contact with us neither to say that they had been taken away", Says Shohel in an interview with Radio Farda.

According to Mrs.Shole, judicial officials have agreed to release her parents with bail, but local officials of Sari, refrain from releasing them, under the pretext of "unfinished investigation".

In a visit to her parents Shole says her parents seem to be under heavy stress. Although the family has not received any official charges m but apparently during their interrogations and verbal exchange with the prosecution officer , they are supposedly "offending the sacred and also promoting this" in the region, and should not continue doing so.

Mrs. Shole says that it has been difficult to get an attorney for her parents' defense, obviously because most fear consequences of taking cases related to the Bahai faith. "If they accept, it would bear consequences for them as well" says Sholeh.

She said they have been looking for help from Lawyers without boarders, but that even is not clear to give fruit.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Iranian-American student released though bail

Esha Momeni Iranian-American student who had returned to Iran to complete her thesis involving a film documentary on women's situation -arrested on 15 October 2008-, has been released on a 198000 dollar bail from Evin prison.

According to Reza Momeni, his father, Esha is not allowed to leave Iran and has to be present in a political court hearing on charges of "acting against national security and propagating against the government".

These charges are heavy enough to have her sentenced to a life prison term.

Mr. Momeni says her daughter has lost eight kilos under stress and difficult situation in prison but is generally in a moderate situation. He emphasized that his family house has been taken ransom for Esha's bail while she is waiting to confront the judge on Tuesday to be clarified on the future process of her case. He was hopeful that her daughter would soon leave Iran for Los Angeles.

Esha was arrested by the traffic police in Tehran for driving errors but was followed to her house, arrested and her belongings searched and confiscated.

Miss Momeni had only ten weeks left to finish her course in the US, and had traveled to Tehran to complete her thesis using a documentary over women activists' campaign collecting the 1 million petition in support of Women's Rights in Iran.

Two other Iranian-Americans are now in prison, charged with "acting against National Security". Arash Alaei an Kamyar Alaei , two brothers have long been specialists working on the elimination of aids in Iran. They have also been held by the Intelligence agents in 209 of Evin prison.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Student activist condemned for 15 years imprisonment

Second Branch of the revolutionary courts of Sanandaj (Iranian Kurdistan) has sentenced Yasser Goli to 15 years prison term in exile.

"The sentence ordered by the court is only 10 lines! This court order which is supposed to be based on article 168 of the Islamic penal code has no reference on any evidence provided against my client Yasser Goli. My client has in none of his interrogations, let alone in the court sessions held against him, confessed against himself" Reiterates attorney Nemat Ahmadi.

According to Human Rights defense organization in Kurdistan (Iran), while rejecting all charges against his client of being affiliated to opposition Kurdish groups Mr.Ahmadi said: "Unfortunately there is a plot here to handicap Kurdish writers and give them guns and send them off for battle in the mountains". Mr.AHmadi continues" I see no logic in labeling civil activists as supporters of political parties, while there is no proof supporting this claim, and no crime committed to prove this and no pretext for the prison term".

Mr. Ahmadi refered to Yasser Golis' high marks in the national University exams said " Is it just to label such highly enthusiastic youth of our nation and dispose of them in different corners and prisons of our land and waste them, instead of encouraging them? What lies ahead for such youth, after they spend 15 years of their best and ripe years behind bars?".

Dr.Ahmadi adds; "I shall put on trial all judicial conscience with regards to this court decision". He then reiterated a point for the Minister of Justice and the Minister of Intelligence and said "As a jurist, I am not against clarifying crimes, but I like to ask Mr. Shahroodi and Mr. Ejei both with practical experiences in both domains, specially that the agent who has been directly involved in fabricating the case against my client has been a direct employee of Mr.Ejei ,to call my clients case from the Sanandaj tribunal and review it with a righteous conscience, the true Islamic and judicial values , so that the innocence of my client be revealed".

Yasser Goli is the first secretary of the Kurdish Student union of Iranian Universities and a civil activist in Sanandaj. It is now 13 months since Yasser has been arrested and imprisoned by the Intelligence of Sanandaj.

According to Dr. Nemat Ahmadi, he has been sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.

Friday, October 31, 2008

American-Iranian student in solitary confinement in Iran

Gholamreza Momeni, in an interview with Rooz Online expressed deep concern about her daughter's wellbeing.

Esha Monein is a graduate student at the School of Communications, Media and Arts at California State University, Northridge, and an active participant of the 1 million campaign signature collection in support of basic women's rights in Iran, said his efforts to ensure the safety and freedom of her daughter has been ineffective so far.

"We have not been able to do a thing. They simply won't answer. They keep saying go away. We will call you as soon as her interrogation is over". He nevertheless expressed his hopes that Iranian officials would realize the misunderstanding concerning her daughter and set her free.

"In any case, when a student, institutions or even an organization wishes to have social activities, it should be supported by the government, and not be imprisoned for trying to improve situations. My daughter was a volunteer and was helping people. My daughter returned to Iran for her thesis. She had interviewed respected and known people in the society. All exchanged contents and comments have been already released publicly in the media. The subject was about women and women's rights. Neither the questions posed not the content replied has been out of the unusual framework permitted in the media. It was concentrating on women's rights' was Mr. Momeni's comments n his daughters charges.

"I believe Iranian officials have to face the issue concerning women's rights one day.
There is a lot to be defended here. Is it right to imprison some one for talking about his rights and the rights of his kind? Women's right is not a political issue. It has nothing to do with regime change! It is not a political issue" expressed Mr. Momeni emphasizing on her daughters principles on civil rights.

" I am ashamed of this situation and that I live in this country under these conditions. I have served this country for years. It is 10 am and I still am engaged on Esha's situation. Her mother is in a wreck. Is there no justice?' exclaimed Mr. Momeni.

As Mr. Momeni highlights the effect of Esha's arrest on other people around them he says "The effect has been simply this: I and many of my colleagues have opened a new interest on the issue concerning women. Women's issues are not to be dodged. Imagine a lady having married a madman. And later when she wishes to divorce the madman, who would support her? It would be practically impossible for her to divorce the Guy.! So it turns out that, if my daughter has such concerns she has to go to prison! My daughter had a good life in the US, but her hear beats with Iran and her fellow Iranians and their problems. Is it fair to treat her like this? If someone tries to produce a University documentary about social problems so that even government officially could use to develop the issues, should she be arrested? This kind of research would have to finally be done at the expense of the government, while she is doing it now foe them.'

Esha's father asks; "why should anyone be arrested for having a camera? She was not loose in public places taking photos. On the contrary, she had taken shots of people with a prior agreement. Why is there no comprehension of charges before any one is arrested without notice in this country? My daughter has not committed any crime to be imprisoned for it. I had no intention of talking to the media, because I was hopeful that officials would realize the misunderstanding and release my daughter. But unfortunately this is what happens" you are suddenly faced with a sudden search and confiscation of your belongings! My daughter lives with her parents. Why have they poured into our house with no notification and searched our house? My wife was seriously hurt in the raid and my other daughter had to leave school for a couple of days for the shock she received. Is this how they should treat citizens whose hear beats for the sake of their country's well fare? We have under gone a revolution in our country and it is time that things follow legal procedures here. They surge some one while he is driving then it turns out that they are themselves members of the security forces. If the case is judicial, then they should summon her for the court. The normal legal procedure of questioning and self defense in the court would guarantee that both sides have had their rights preserved.

Mr. Momeni while expressing deep concern of his daughter's well being in solitary confinement said "Any statement made by my daughter in solitary confinement is void of any credibility. Talking under stress and fear has no validity. Mr. Ahmadinejad who claims to defend Freedom, had gone to the US and spoke out. Did his reflections hurt the US? On the contrary, everyone praises the US democracy. Now my daughter has interviewed a couple of civil right activists as a researcher, but she is sent to prison. Is there any justice in this? Where is justice?

Mr. Momeni stressed that her daughters concerns are his and said: We should re think over women's issues. They should talk to spiritual leaders here and solve the problems.
It is not right to allow all rights for men and none for women. My daughter is saying the same thing. What I leaned from my daughters arrest is that our government should take women's issues seriously. It is nit a good idea to imprison the one who is trying to point to shortcomings that have to be looked over. This is not good for the Islamic Republics image! Where is Islamic justice?

Esha Momeni, producer and photographer, student activist on women's issues and a volunteer of the 1 million signature campaign. She was arrested in Modaress highway on 15 October by the camouflaged police. She was illegally arrested. Her car was stopped for speed, but she was transferred to 209 Evin prison ward. Before she was arrested, her house was searched and her belongings had been confiscated, which included her computer, the films she had recorded for her theses.

Her parents approached the Court to clarify her situation after 5 days. They were told not to approach the court any more until her interrogations are over.

Mohammad Ali Dadkhah, declared Esha's arrest illegal. Mr. Dadkhah officially declared in the "Equality" Internet site, that she is representing the Momeni family for Esha. "As far as I have been told by the family, Eshas arrest has been for filming for a University thesis. According to article 23 f the Constitution, photography and taking film of public places which are not listed as illegal does not constitute a crime and therefore is subject to inquiry prior to any attempt for guilt. The aforementioned films had been taken in homes of the subjects interviewed, which does not fit the category of public places and buildings.

Being a member of the Human rights society, Mr.Dadkhah said; "Iran has accepted the general framework of the Human Rights charter. Article 27 of this Charter reiterates that no government can, under the pretext of respecting its own rules, undermine internationally respected rules. According to basic civil rights mentioned in the charter, and article 3 of Nations rights in the constitution, guarantees individual freedoms of citizens. Therefore this arrest is illegal and in violation of all international covenants" .

Hassan Ghashgaii, spokesman for Foreign affairs said in a press conference, on Monday 27 October 2008; "Institutions concerning this issue are following up the persons arrest, the foreign office has not yet received any news of the investigation so far."

Saturday, October 25, 2008

9 years prison sentence for two Isfahan University students

Jamal Rahmani of the industry faculty and Rashed Abdollahi of the political science faculty of Isfahan University were arrested on 12 June 2008 by the security guards in Isfahan. They were first taken to Kermanshah security centre and later transferred to Sanandaj prison centre (Situated in the western Kurdish region of Iran).

They have been put on trial by Judge "Tiary" and charged for having contacts with Kurdish opposition groups.

Kamal Rahmani has been sentenced to 6 years conditional imprisonment and exile to Izeh prison in a small village.

Mr.Abdollahi has also been sentenced to exile, but in a separate district of Masjid Soleiman, along with 3 years conditional imprisonment.

Relatives to the two students have reported that both have been subjected to torture and psychological pressure while under interrogation.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

17 years imprisonment for ceremony

According to Amirkabir news site, political activist, Mr. Mohammad Ali Mansouri has been sentence 17 years prison and exile to Gohardasht prison, for having participated in a ceremony marking the great massacre of more than 5000 political prisoners in 1988 by Khomeini's orders.

Mr. Mansouri was arrested in September 2007, at his home. This arrest was only three days after the memorial held in remembrance of the massacred political prisoners. In the attack, his belongings were confiscated, his house searched and Mr. Mansoori was scuffled and transferred to the notorious 209 solitary confinement.

It is unclear, how ever, why the Intelligence Ministry has removed the first applied charges against him, which entailed his participation in the mentioned memorial services, and later charged under other pretexts.

During the six month of his detention, Mr. Mansouri had spent four months in the notorious 209 Evin section and in solitary confinement. According to family members and eyewitnesses he has been subjected to violence during his detention.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Concerns over situation of Al Alam sacked journalist

Mohammad Hassan Falahi Zade, former journalist working in Al Alam TV channel, has gone on hunger strike. He was said to have been dismissed for refusing to work with the Intelligence Ministry agents at work and hence sacked, and later arrested.

Prisoners rights group; Activists in support of Human Rights and Democracy, has reported that Mr. Falahi Zadeh has been protesting against ethnic prejudice used against him has been demanding for his basic rights.

Considering his blood disorder and also previous cases of political prisoners murdered under various pretexts while on hunger strike, such as Akbar Mohammadi and Valiollah Feiz Mahdavi , activists are extremely worried of Mr. Falahie Zades situation.

On his second day of hunger strike, Mr. Falahi Zade was summoned to prison security and threatened by a known " Koorgal".

Mr.Falahi Zade is demanding for his basic rights such as, the right to council, the right to defense and clarification of his charges and an end to psychological torture.

According to reports released by Activists in support for Human Rights and Democracy, Mr. Falahi Zade had revealed news on execution of those charged with bombing attacks in Southern Iran in an interview with Dubai TV and various other Arab media.

Mr. Falahi Zade was arrested on 1 November 2006, transferred to Evin prison and under went White torture. His trial was only a few minutes in which he was sentenced to 3 years imprisonment along with 30 thousand dollars for compensation.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Baghi is freed

The one year prison sentence of Emadeddin Baghi, a renown Human Right activist has officially terminated .

Mr. Baghi approached the First Branch of the prosecutor on 14 October 2007, to account for his accusations regarding activities in defense of freedom of press, when he was arrested.

He had protested his deteriorating conditions in the 209 Evin sections, where he was kept in complete isolation by the Intelligence Ministry. He suffered two heart attacks and was transferred to public ward and later to Hospital and eventually was allowed temporary leave for his health conditions.

During his leaf, Mr.Baghi was interrogated 5 times, for which he was transferred to and from Evin. Despite his Doctors' prescription which emphasized on his deteriorating heart condition and suggested a peaceful atmosphere for his recovery, he was again transferred to solitary confinement in 209 Evin. This prompted much protest.

His wife, in the meantime printed an open letter addressed to the Public prosecutor, protesting to 24 restrictions imposed on his husband. In this letter she had also pointed out that Mr. Baghis' family members were also called by the prosecutors' office at least 77 times during his detention.
Although confiding prisoners strictly to solitary confinement and blindfolding them are supposedly illegal, Mr. Baghi had claimed, he was not allowed to leave his cell for 4 days, not even for the bathroom, which lead to severe kidney disorders later on.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Osanlou's transfere to Rajaii prison: He talks

Parvaneh, spouse to Osanlou, a prominent leader of the independent Transport Syndicate of Tehran and the suburbs, has said her husband is in prison because he has been striving for the rights of workers within Iran's legal framework.

Parvaneh's interview has appeared in the "Shahregan" site.

"here eyes all filled with stress and anxiety, as she speaks of her husbands heart problems or the recent stitches of his eyes. She tries very hard to hide her troubled mind but her trembling voice gives way to her stressful life.

She complains of Iranian official conduct which contradicts the Iranian President's comments in New York, while he had told a reporter that in Iran, prisoners are trialed with presence of their attorney and have a fair and open trial.

As far as she is concerned, her husband has never had these advantages.

She is aware of the "Right to have Leave" for prisoners, but is puzzled as to why her husband has never been allowed to leave the prison , during the last painful 25 months, even for his heart problems and medical care, let alone for any "Leave".

Parvaneh speaks with much complaint, as she explains how her husband was harassed and handcuffed, when he was being taken to hospital once, for a heart failure, and tears run down her worrisome eyes.

Shahregan reporter: Mrs. Osanlou, according to information received your husband was taken to hospital in hand cuffs and chains?

Mrs.Osanlou: Yes! After several months of delay they finally allowed my husband to be visited in LabfiNejad hospital on 21 September. The way he was transferred was shocking in hand cuffs and chains. Seeing this only caused more pain. One of his stitches had gone bad and apparently his blood pressure was exceptionally high (it had reached nearly 14). Drs prescribed new medication for his heart and looked over his stitches.

Shahregan reporter: What did the Doctors say about his condition?

Mrs.Osanlou: They emphasized Mansour should be under treatment and his conditions to be controlled and checked. It seems that two of his arteries are blocked and to treat this situation he has to be kept in a hygiene and peaceful atmosphere. One of the Drs. had also written a letter to prison officials, highlighting the fact that handcuffs and chains and so forth will cause much stress and should not be used on this patient.

Shahregan reporter: Mrs. Osanlou, how have officials in charge of this case, explained this transfer?

Mrs.Osanlou: I along with his mother and sister approached the judge responsible for his case on 25 August. He claimed he knew nothing of the situation but would follow it up. The next day we approached the judge and after several hours of waiting finally were received. He said the decision had been taken by the Security Council of Tehran and Prison Organizations, and the only reason is that Mr. Osanlou "Talks". I replied "any living man "talks". When you hold some one in prison, his reaction to talk and release his stress or even protest, is very natural".

Shahregan reporter: You are defiant to Mr.Osanlous transfer to Rajaii Shahr prison and seek his hospitalization. Could you tall us about his conditions in that prison?

Mrs.Osanlou: Osanlou should never, under any conditions be kept there. Firstly, he should not be held in the non political ward. He should be kept in the political wing, even if he is to be imprisoned. At the moment, we are worried at all times, (because f the threats posed to political prisoners moved to these wards). Our life is shattered. For example fo reach call, he has to wait in a long queue (with his conditions) and finally when his turn comes, we are never able to confer with him all the problems and hazards.

On the other hand the atmosphere and environment of that prison is in sharp contrast to conditions necessary for his treatment. As my husband had said several times, the inmates in that ward often have knife fights and the place is very dangerous. Most people smoke and there is no ventilation. It is practically airless. Apart from the conditions, apparently from two in the afternoon onwards, they are not allowed to have fresh air. Smoke and stress is the worst thing for Mansour's heart and eye conditions.

Friday, September 19, 2008

19 Azerbaijanis Arbitrarily Arrested

International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran

Rights of Ethnic Minorities Routinely Violated

(17 September 2008) Intelligence Ministry agents arrested 19 prominent members of the Azerbaijani minority at a private Ramadan celebration on the evening of 10 September 2008, and detained them in Evin Prison where nine are still being held without charge, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said today.

“We condemn these arbitrary arrests and detentions, and call upon the authorities to return the citizens to their families,” the Campaign said. “The mistreatment of the Azerbaijani minority in Iran should end.”

According to witnesses, between ten and fifteen plainclothes security agents entered the home of Sayad Muhammadian, who was hosting the Iftar dinner, and began arresting the guests. Among those arrested were three youths attending the dinner with their mother Raqieh Alizadeh, the wife of Abbas Lisani, an Azerbaijani activist imprisoned in exile in Yazd.

Upon arrival in Evin Prison they were separated from their mother. Raqieh was interrogated until 2 AM on 11 September. She was later released from prison with three of her children, along with Akram Najari, Rabab Azimi, and Farhad Rezai. On 14 September, three other prisoners, Yusef Hoshiar, Shabaz Ebrahimzadeh, and Muhammad Abbaspour, were released. No reason has been given for any of the arrests.

Most of those arrested are prominent writers, teachers, and journalists. The nine men currently in detention are: Alireza Sarafi, Hasan Rashdi, Akbar Azad, Saeed Muhammadi, Mahdi Namimi Ardabili, Hasan Rahimibayat, Abbas Naimi, Hasan Haydari and Sayad Muhammadian.

Alireza Sarafi is the author of the book, Ethnic Pluralism and Iranian National Identity, and director of the monthly publication Dilmaj (which until October 2007 was being published in Azerbaijani Turkic and Persian). He is also a contributing writer for the bilingual magazine Varliq, and teacher of Azerbaijani folklore at universities in Tehran. He has conducted seminars on language at Tabriz University and is also one of the founding members of the National Peace Council.

Hasan Rashdi and Akbar Azad are contributing writers for Varliq magazine. Rashdi is a teacher of Azerbaijani Turkic literature, journalist and contributor to various national publications, author of three books on the Azerbaijani Turkic language and Azerbaijani identity. Rashidi and Azad are founders of the Chicheklar Qorulushu Forum that works for the protection of children’s rights. Akbar Azad is also the author of children’s books in Azerbaijani Turkic and contributor to numerous publications.

Saeed Muhammadi is a poet, author, journalist, and editor-in-chief of the literary magazine Yashmaq. He is the former editor-in-chief of the publication Paryaq.

Namimi Ardabili is a poet and teacher of Azerbaijani Turkic language at Tehran University. Hasan Rahimibayat is a human rights activist and a member of the Reporters Committee for Human Rights.

Iranian authorities routinely accuse Azerbaijani cultural activists and scholars of acting against national security. Those involved with promoting Azerbaijani culture and its study have routinely been arrested and sometimes imprisoned. According to Mr. Alireza Javanbaksh--spokesperson for the Committee for the Defense of Azerbaijani Political Prisoners (ASMAK)-- ten Azerbaijani activists are currently serving prison terms, and ten Azerbaijani university students are awaiting sentencing in Iranian prisons.

The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran called for an investigation of the arbitrary arrests on 10 September, and for the observation of cultural and linguistic rights of Azerbaijanis and all minorities in Iran.

“While the government of Iran, as a member of the United Nations, is obligated to protect the rights of its minority citizens to pursue studies in their own language, yet the authorities consider the study of Azerbaijani culture and language as a transgression,” the Campaign stated.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Open Letter from the Families of Currently Imprisoned Tabriz University Students

Families of the Imprisoned Students
By Gozaar

September 7, 2008

To the Chief of Justice Ayatollah Hashemi Shahroodi:The signatories of this letter—being the families of the imprisonedstudents of Azerbaijan—respectfully bring forth our objections to, andcomplaints about, the legal and security departments for wrongfullyarresting our loved ones and subjecting them to mental and physicalpressure.

In July and August, our children were arrested by safety officials andtaken to the National Security Office's temporary prison without anexplanation. There, in individual cells, they were interrogated dayand night and subjected to severe mental and physical pressures.

Our children were robbed of the most basic human rights granted to anaccused person, such as the right to meet with family, the right tosee a lawyer, and even the right to study or get fresh air. Instead,the accused were only allowed brief telephone communication with theirfamily members every two weeks.

Such restrictions have been implemented despite news of the waningphysical and mental condition of our loved ones. This bad news hasdirectly caused stress, and even mental and emotional illness, for thestudents' families.

As the Chief Justice, we request that you issue an order to deal withthe cases of our loved ones. We ask you to declare that the treatmentof our loved ones—appropriate only in the case of serious crimes—is inno way proportionate to the actions of these students. We ask that youmatch the imprisonment procedure with accusations against thestudents—which are not serious enough to warrant the currentpunishment. We would also like you to grant our loved ones permissionto meet with their families and lawyers. Further, we request thatthose who have been hit or injured be transported to a medical centerimmediately.

The family of University of Tabriz law student, Faraz Zahtab
The family of University of Tabriz law student, Aydin Khaje'i
The family of University of Tabriz mechanical engineering graduatestudent, Sajad Radmehr
The family of University of Tabriz mechanical engineering graduatestudent, Mansoor Aminian
The family of University of Tabriz electrical engineering student, Amir Mardani
The family of University of Tabriz geography student, Maghsood Ahdi
The family of former University of Tabriz student and militaryofficer, Daryoosh Hatemi
The family of "Malik Ashtar Isfahan" University student, Majid MakooyizadThe Families of

Currently Imprisoned Tabriz University Students
CC:The Prosecutor of the Public and Revolutionary Courts of Tabriz
The National ProsecutorThe Head of The Supreme Court

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Kamyar and Arash Alaii under torture in 209

Both Kamyar and Arash Alaii were arrested on 23 June 2008 by security forces, and are still in detention after 2 months under going interrogation and torture.

The Alaii brothers have been vanguards in combating Aids in Iran.

According to reports by the Student Committee of the Human Rights Reporters, the two Doctors have been separated in solitary confinement and are undergoing immense pressure. Apparently security officials have managed to compel them to fake confessions suggesting their involvement in a plot to overthrow the government. They have been threatened not to ask for lawyers.

The Islamic Republic had previously charged the Alaii brothers of "acting to overthrow the Islamic Republic", through establishing an NGO, affiliated to the USA.

This has been the case during last year in which civil activists have been targeted with charges such as "acting to overthrow the government", in order to pave the way for security forces to carry out widespread arrests.

Dr.Kamyar Alaii has been a researcher in Harvard University and the founder of triangular clinics, specialist in World Health planning, and an activist in preventing the spread of Aids in Iran.

Before his arrest, in an interview with the Farsi speaking Radio Zamaneh, he had expressed concern over the spread of Aids indicating the rising statistics of those infected by Aids to have reached 100 000 so far. In the same interview he had re iterated that the spread could be contained.

Iran is a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and is obligated to pertain to the obligations of this Covenant.

These include: refraining from arbitrary arrests and detention, announcing reasons of arrest with no delay, announcing charges under which the victims are detained, allowing the right to defense and to have a legal defense, and also allowing the victim to be present when charges are ruled.

Political activist abducted and under interrogation

Political activist Kourosh Ahmadi, from Karaj city, has been arrested by the Intelligence security forces on 25 August 2008 and is at the moment under interrogation and torture.

According to eye witness accounts and family members, Kourosh was beaten up and abducted near his home by plain clothed agents who appeared to be of the Intelligence Minsitry.

On the other hand some prisoners of Rajaii Shahr have asserted to have seen him in that prison.

According to their reports, Mr.Ahmadi is being held in the security section number 3, which is officially run by the Intelligence section of the RGC (known as the Sepah Pasdaran).

It is also reported that he is prohibited from all contacts with his family and is under intense interrogation and pressure.

Mr.Ahmadi has had a prior arrest in 2004 on charges of propagating against the State.

Defend the Rights of Kurdish Political Prisoners who are on Hunger Strike in Iran

Issued by Sayeh Hassan: On August 25th 2008 a large number of Kurdish political prisoners went on a hunger strike, to protest against the brutal treatment of Kurdish political prisoners, as well as the imposition of heavy sentences including lengthy prison terms and the death sentence.
The Islamic Regime in Iran is well known for its inhumane treatment of political prisoners in general, and ethnic minorities in particular. Most of the Kurdish prisoners have been subjected to severe physical and psychological torture; many of them have been sentenced to lengthy prison terms, and some to death.

Many of these prisoners are human rights, civil rights or women’s rights activists and they include teachers, journalists, womens’ rights activists and students. The trials of these individuals have taken place behind closed doors, without a defence lawyer and on numerous occasions without the presence of the accused himself/herself.

Currently there are at least 8 Kurdish political prisoners on death row, the names of these individuals include Adnan Hassanpour, Hiwa Bwtimar, Farzad Kamangar, Anwer Hussein Panahy, Farhad Vakily, Ali Haidarian, Arsalan Awliaiy and Habibullah Latify.

Some of the prisoners sentenced to lengthy prison terms include Ms. Hanna Abdi (5 years imprisonment), Ms. Zaynab Baiazidy (4 years imprisonment), and Ms. Fatima Eftary (18 months imprisonment).

There are also many prisoners who are being held without a charge being laid against them or without a verdict. Some of these prisoners are Kawa Jwanmard, Ysir Guly, Hidayet Gazali, Sabah Nasri, Masoud Kurdpur, Rwnak Safarzade, Kamran Alaiy, Arash Alaiy.

We the undersigned urge The United Nations Secretary General, The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, The European Union as well as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch to condemn the brutal treatment of political prisoners in Iran, in particular the treatment of ethnic minorities, and to pressure the Islamic Regime to:

1. Release all political prisoners who are being held without a charge, or in the alternative to charge them with internationally recognized crimes.

2. To rescind the death sentences for all political prisoners.

3. To have new trials for political prisoners whose trials took place behind closed doors. These new trials must meet international standards, be held in open court before a jury, with the presence of the accused and his/her defence lawyer.

4. To allow for visitations from independent human rights organizations to monitor the condition and treatment of political prisoners in Iranian prisons.

This is a petition has been created by Sayeh Hassan a human rights activist in Canada and is addressed to Ban Ki-moon Secretary General of the United Nations, Navi Pillay: United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, The European Union, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Two years sentence for Kurdish students

Sabah Nasri and Hedayat Ghazali have been sentenced to two years imprisonment by the 13th branch of the revolutionary court.

Sabaha Nasri a student of the law faculty of Tehran University and Hedayat Ghazali studying psychology in Alameh Tabatabaii University, were involved in printing a student news release called "Rozhameh", which covered articles on civil rights for students. The Court has accused these students of participating in illegal congregations.

This is while the two students have already spent 14 month in prison, and accordingly their attorney, Mr.Nikbakht has filed a complaint.

Recently Dorri Najafabadi, Tehran prosecutor, had warned students that any one attempting to "Create a political trend", will be dealt with by the Judiciary.

According to International Organizations reports at least 150 students have been detained and prosecuted during the past year.

Mohamad Hashemi and Bahareh Hedayat, the other two students arrested by the Intelligence agency were released on 16 August 2008. They were charged to be in contact with opposition forces outside the country. This is how the Agency has legalized the arbitrary detention and arrest of the students.

Ahmad Ghasaban, Majid Tavakoli and Ehsan Mansoori, the three famous Amirkabir University students were released on conditions on 13 August 2008. They had been detained on charges of "Insulting the sacred of the State".

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

4 year prison term for a Kurdish name and denouncing gender apartheid

Zeinab Bayazidi is being punished for choosing a Kurdish name for her shop and participating in the 1 Million petition camping against gender apartheid. According to reports received from The Iranian Women's Guild, she has received a 4 year prison term and has begun a hunger strike in protest to this charge.

Ms Bayazidi , 26 , and an activist of the 1 million campaign petition and a graduate of computer engineering , was summoned to the Intelligence offices of Mahabad (Iranian western Kurdish region). She was "trialed "with no attorney presence and exiled to Zanajan. She is passing her eight day of hunger strike at the moment.

Zinab had owned a health shop in Mahabad called "Zeylan", named after a known plant used for medical treatment. She threatened a number of times by the Intelligence offices of Mahabad to change the name claiming that the aforementioned name is being used by the insurgent group "PKK" and represented a "code". Since the name was a regular official Kurdish name and legally used by the registry offices of Kurdistan, she had decided to ignore the warnings.
A member of Ms. Bayazidi's family had informed the Iranian Women's Guild site that, the Intelligence Ministry of Mahabad had summoned her in a telephone contact for an interrogation 40 days ago. After being interrogated for 2 hours she was released and told to return in the next 2 days. She was arrested the second time.
According to this information, "She was refused an attorney and was sentenced with the charges almost immediately". They have claimed they were tricked by the court and Intelligence office, and have asked for an attorney.

All human right and gender equality activities in the Kurdish region have been hampered under the excuse of the presence of opposition groups and have grounded all activists. They are very easily charged and their files are tempered with, to make any legal defense, or support by other civil activists, difficult.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

8 Kurdish political activist sentenced to death

According to reports from the "Campaign to stop the death penalty in Kurdistan", so far 8 political activists have been sentenced to death in the Sanandaj district –West of Iran.

This includes Habibollah Latifi a student from the law faculty of Sanandaj University in Ilam province.

Habibollah , 26 years old , has been in detention since the beginning of September 2007.

He has been charged for being an infidel (The term used against those who oppose the regime through armed struggle). He has also been charged to death for co-operating with Kurdish opposition parties by so called Sanandaj "revolutionary court", on 2 August 2008.

It is noticeable that the charge has not yet been officially issued to his lawyer Mr.Nemat Ahmadi.

During his detention , Mr.Latifi has been subjected to violent torture and punishments , resulting in internal hemorrhage and occasional unconsciousness .

The deterioration of his physical condition forced his transfer to Tohid hospital and later to the public social hospital of Sanandaj.

Political activist who have been sentenced to death are named as follow:
Anan HassanPour- Journalist
Hiwa Boutimar – Civil Rights activist and journalist
Farzad Kamangar- Civil and Human Rights activist
Anvar Hossein Panahi- Civil Rights activist and teacher
Farhad Vakili- Civil Rights activist
Ali Heydarian- Civil Rights activist
Arsalan Oliayee- Civil Rights activist
Habibollah Latifi - Civil Rights and student activist

Iran, after China, holds the top toll of death penalties.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Political Activist Sentenced to Eight Years in Prison

International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran

(7 August 2008) Abbas Khorsandi, a political activist, has been sentenced to eight years in prison by an appeals court, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said today. The only evidence in his prosecution is apparently based on his political beliefs and internet writings.

Branch 36 of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court confirmed Khorsandi’s sentence on 12 July 2008. The appeals court decision was issued by Judges Salimi and Zargar. Khorsandi is currently held in Evin Prison.

“Given Khorsandi’s activities, there is no justification for his lengthy imprisonment. The Judiciary must be held accountable as to why Khorsandi is being locked up for eight years,” the Campaign stated.

According to information received by the Campaign, Khorsandi’s activities involved only expressing his peaceful opinions on the internet and his sentencing is not justified under any circumstance.

Plainclothes intelligence agents detained Khorsandi at his shop in Firoozkooh, a town outside Tehran, on 9 September 2007. On the same day, intelligence agents raided and searched his home but could not find any incriminating evidence to confiscate.

He was held in incommunicado detention for three months in Evin prison. The authorities subsequently charged him with “acting against national security through formation of an illegal association.” Khorsandi founded the Iran Democratic Party, whose activities were limited to publishing internet writings and involved only five other people who communicated their political views.

He was put on trial on 4 March 2007 at Branch 15 of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court. The presiding Judge Salavati announced an eight- year prison sentence on 17 March 2007.
According to his associates, he is in ill health. The Campaign called on the Iranian Judiciary to hold a public trial adhering to international standards of due process, in which a fair assessment of Khorsandi’s guilt or innocence could obtain.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Arbitrary Detention and Ill-Treatment of human rights defenders Hemid Valai, Sejjad Radmehr and Vedud Esedi

Front Line:

Iran: Arbitrary Detention and Ill-Treatment of human rights defenders Hemid Valai, Sejjad Radmehr and Vedud Esedi
Front Line is concerned following reports that human rights defenders Hemid Valai, Sejjad Radmehr and Vedud Esedi have been arbitrarily detained and subjected to ill-treatment and torture. Hemid Valai is a human rights lawyer. Hemid Valai, Sejjad Radmehr and Vedud Esedi are all activists working to promote the rights of ethnic Azerbaijanis in Iran.

Further Information
Posted 08/08/2008 Hemid Valai was reportedly detained on 15 July 2008, after being summoned to the interrogation unit of the Ministry of Information in Tabriz. While in custody, Hemid Valai has reportedly been subjected to ill-treatment and torture. Following repeated requests from his family, he was transferred to a prison hospital to receive treatment for injuries allegedly sustained during his detention and was permitted to receive family visits. Reports indicate that Hemid Valai's two front teeth are broken, as are several of his ribs and his right leg, and that his jaw has been damaged. He also reportedly lost consciousness several times while in detention as a result of the beatings inflicted by authorities.

Sejjad Radmehr was arrested by security agents on 17 July 2008 at the entrance of Tabriz University following his defence of his graduate thesis. It is believed that the arrest was in connection with Sejjad Radmehr's conducting a peaceful sit-in of university students on 11 May 2008 in protest against his treatment by the university authorities, who had initially banned him from defending his thesis and in protest against arrests of human rights activists. Sejjad Radmehr is reportedly in incommunicado detention and no charges against him have as yet been made public.

Vedud Esedi was arrested on 22 July 2008 at his home in Rasht. Four security agents reportedly entered Vedud Esedi's home, conducted a search of the residence and confiscated his computer, several CDs and other personal belongings. Vedud Esedi's current whereabouts have not been confirmed by authorities but reports have indicated that it is probable that he has been transferred to Section 209 of Evin Prison in Tehran. According to information received, no charges have been publicly brought against him.

Front Line believes that the arrest and detention of Hemid Valai, Sejjad Radmehr and Vedud Esedi is directly related to their activities in defence of human rights, particularly in defence of the rights of ethnic Azerbaijanis in Iran. In light of reports of the ill-treatment and torture of Hemid Valai, Front Line fears for the physical and psychological integrity of Hemid Valai, Sejjad Radmehr and Vedud Esedi, and believes that their continued detention may form part of a campaign to restrict the work of ethnic Azerbaijani human rights defenders in Iran.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

7 members of the Bahaii Faith in solitary confinement of 209

The seven leaders of the Bahaii faith, who have received prison sentences, are: Fariba Kamal Abadi, Jamol-Aldin Khanjani. Afif Naiimi, Saieed Rezaii, Behrooz Tavakoli, Vahid TizFahm, and Mahvash Sabet.

All are being detained in solitary confinement of the 209 section of the notorious Evin prison.

Six of the detainees were arrested at their homes after a night raid by the Intelligence agents on 14 May 2008.

Hassan Haddad , deputy Prosecutor of Tehran- known as the butcher by most students – announced on 2 August that the detainees are charged for founding an illegal groups and being in contact with Israel.

Iranian government spokesman Gholam-Hossein Elham had accused the six members 'of a group working together "against national interest." And that it was "an organized establishment linked to foreigners, the Zionists in particular."
In reaction to these allegations, Bani Dugal, the principal representative of the Baha'i International Community to the United Nations, called Iran's assertion "utterly baseless."
"The allegations are not new, and the Iranian government knows well that they are untrue," he had said.
He had categorically denied accusations implying that the Bahaiis have been involved in attempts to overthrow the Iranian government, and asserted that "The Bahai community is not involved in political matters. Their only 'crime' is their belief in the (Bahai) faith."
In an interview Bani Dugal had stressed: "The argument for a ploy with Israel is a bald-faced lie and deception. The Iranian government is taking advantage of the fact that the Bahai community's governing council is based in Israel," (August 4 1980)
The Islamic Republic of Iran does not recognize the followers of the Bahaii faith. This was particularly obvious during the 1980s open.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Human right activist under torture in Tabriz

Hamid Valayee, human right activist, who has been undergoing constant torture for at least 13 days in the detention centre of the Intelligence Ministry of Tabriz, was bailed out to be treated on 1 August 2008.

According to witnessed reports of a Human right association in Tabriz, Mr.Valaiees' teeth have all been broken, his leg smashed, and he had been unconscious several times during torture. Because of his deteriorating physical conditions Mr. Valayee has been transferred to the prison clinic even after he was returned to prison.

According to the same sources, Tabriz prosecutor has rejected all attempts by Mr.Valaee 's attorney to ask for a coroners' report and an end to torture. Mr.Naghi Mahmoudi , attrorney, asserted that his clients' file is still in the 4th prosecutors branch in Tabriz, and "under Investigation".

Mr.Valayee ws arrested arbitrarily after he was summoned to the Prosecutors office on 15 July 2008.

Student goes on Hunger strike after family receives threats from Intelligence Ministry

According to the campaign supporting Abed Tavanche, he has begun a hunger strike on 31 July , to protest against threats made against his family by the Intelligence Ministry. Abed has been sentenced to 8 months in prison.

According to information received from the campaign, officials of the Intelligence Ministry of Arak city have been exerting much pressure on his family asking them not to approach the media and keep silence, and have sent for his sisters' husband for a hearing at the offices of the Intelligence Ministry this Tuesday. (In the usual terms this normally implies to interrogation and even arbitrary arrest).

Mr.Tavanche has in a contact made it clear that he is very serious and he shall keep to one glass of water each day till these unjust threats are stopped.

In December 2008 the Intelligence Ministry had arrested at least 40 students to prevent them from commemorating the "student day", and Mr.Tavanche was amongst those arrested. He is affiliated with the movement called "Students seeking Equality and Freedom".

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Discrimination against Kurdish Iranians unchecked and on the rise

Amnesty International:
30 July 2008

Iran’s government is failing in its duty to prevent discrimination and human rights abuses against its Kurdish citizens, according to a new Amnesty International report.

The organization fears that the repression of Kurdish Iranians, particularly human rights defenders, is intensifying, according to the report Iran: Human rights abuses against the Kurdish minority.

The report also says that women face a double challenge to their human rights, both as members of a marginalised ethnic minority and as women in a predominantly patriarchal society.

Around 12 million Kurds live in Iran making up 15 percent of the population. Expression of Kurdish culture, such as dress and music, is generally respected and the Kurdish language is used in some broadcasts and publications.

However the Kurdish minority continues to suffer deep-rooted discrimination. Kurds in Iran have their social, political and cultural rights repressed along with their economic aspirations.

Parents are banned from registering their babies with certain Kurdish names and religious minorities that are mainly or partially Kurdish are targeted by measures designed to stigmatize and isolate them.

Discriminated against in their access to employment and adequate housing, the economic neglect of Kurdish regions has resulted in an entrenched poverty which has further marginalized Kurds.

Kurdish human rights defenders, including community activists and journalists, face arbitrary arrest, ill-treatment and prosecution when they protest against the government’s failure to observe international human rights standards.

When they link their human rights work to their Kurdish identity they risk further violations of their rights. Some, including women’s rights activists, become prisoners of conscience. Others suffer torture, grossly unfair trials before Revolutionary Courts and the death penalty.

Ethnic Kurds Farzad Kamangar, Ali Heydariyan and Farhad Vakili were sentenced to death in February 2008 after conviction of “moharebeh” (enmity against God), following a grossly flawed process that fell far short of international standards for a fair trial.

This is a charge levelled against those accused of taking up arms against the state, apparently in connection with their alleged membership of the armed group, the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which carries out attacks in Turkey. Ali Heydariyan and Farhad Vakili were also sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment, apparently for forging documents. Under Iranian law, they must serve their prison sentences before being executed.

In May this year Mohammad Sadiq Kabudvand was sentenced to 11 years’ imprisonment by Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court in Tehran. The sentence apparently comprises 10 years’ imprisonment for “acting against state security by establishing the Human Rights Organization of Kurdistan (HROK)” and one year’s imprisonment for “propaganda against the system”.

The verdict followed a closed trial session. Amnesty International considers Mohammad Sadiq Kabudvand to be a prisoner of conscience, held solely on account of the peaceful exercise of his rights to freedom of expression and association during his work as chair of the HROK and his activities as a journalist. Such rights are expressly recognized in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Iran is a state party.

“Iran’s constitution provides for equality of all Iranians before the law. But, as our report shows, this is not the reality for Kurds in Iran,” said Malcolm Smart, director of the Middle East and North Africa programme of Amnesty International.

“The Iranian government has not taken sufficient steps to eliminate discrimination, or to end the cycle of violence against women and punish those responsible.”

Although women and girls form the backbone of economic activity in the Kurdish areas, strict social codes are used to deny their human rights.

Such codes make it difficult for government officials to investigate inequalities in girls’ education, early and forced marriages, and domestic violence against Kurdish girls and women - and the severe consequences of some of these abuses, including “honour killings” and suicide. “Kurdish women are victims of violence on a daily basis and face discrimination from state officials, groups or individuals, including family members.” Malcolm Smart said.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Return to prison for writing a slogan on the walls

Mehrdad Lahrasbi, former student activist who Participated in the 1999 student protest, and released after undergoing 9 years of prison term, has again been sent to prison.

Mr.Lahrasbi was taken from Evin prison to the revolution court, to be informed of his "charges', he was later transferred to solitary confinement of 240 ward of Evin Prison.

His "charges "include; writing anti government slogans on the wall.

In 1999, Mr.Lahrasbi and five other student activists who had participated in the student protest had been sentenced to death. His sentence had been reduced to 15 years. During the period of his detention, he had been tortured and under went much psychological pressure:

The coroner at the Prosecutors' office had acknowledged his physical loss. In return, prison officials had transferred him to the public ward with ordinary prisons, to increase pressure and enforce confessions.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Bherooz Javid Tehrani charged once again!

Political prisoner, Behrooz Javid Tehrani, a former student activist who has been facing prison for 7 years in various sequences since 1999 has again been sentenced to an additional 3 years .

He is charged with having contact with opposition groups outside of Iran.

This so called "court order" was sentenced to Mr. Tehrani on 19 July 2008, while undergoing other sentences in the Rajaii-shahr prison of Karaj (west of Tehran).

The (so called) judiciary process of Mr.Tehrani has been devoid of any rights: he was sentenced without having a lawyer and his trial was confidential.

In May 2005, he was arrested at home by Intelligence agents and subjected to violent physical and mental torture. According to his later revelations, the coroner of the public prosecutor had identified and testified to obvious marks of torture on his body.

In 2005 Mr.Tehrani was sentenced to four years imprisonment for being a member of the Iran Democratic Front.

His activities go back to 18 Tir (July 1999) during the famous student demonstration in Tehran for which he had received an 8 eight year sentence, but was released after undergoing 4 four years of detention in Rajaii-Shahr prison.

Family of Human right activist writes to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

Mohammad Sedigh Kaboodvand's family has written a letter, to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and other humanitarian Organizations, in a desperate attempt to save his life from the a medically deteriorating situation in his detention centre.

In this letter it is reiterated that Mr. Kaboodvand has been arrested for at least seven months. He has been kept in solitary confinement and undergone inhuman interrogations and physical harassment while in custody, which has lead to his health deteriorating. so far he has experienced problematic heart failure, kidney and blood problems.

It is quoted as saying that Mr.Kaboodvands wife and child have been threatened to be arrested by the Intelligence Ministry of Iran.

Part of this letter reads: "The revolution court has recently charged Mr. Kaboodvand for his activities defending Human Rights in the Islamic Republic and has sentenced him to 11 years imprisonment. This (so called) court order had been passed on to Mr.Kaboodvand by his interrogator prior to the Courts' official order release. Kaboodvand is the editor in chief of the "People's Message" weekly and for this also he has received another 6 months prison sentence along with a 5 year prohibition of work as journalist and Editor of People's Message weekly. Parallel to this, there has been another file opened in his case which relates to a book on women's rights and is (currently) under investigation."

Another other part of this letter reads; "Kaboodvand is a noble journalist, with immense humanitarian beliefs and obligations and a conscience mind.

Mr.Kaboodvand , began his activities 15 years ago during the realm of raising Human Rights awareness and individual conscience on Democratic rights within peaceful frameworks.

He was arrested on 30 June 2007 and charged with "founding the offices of Defending Human Rights in Kurdistan" and engaging in acts of threat against the Islamic Republic.

A copy of this letter has been sent to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights , Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Mohammad Hashemi and Bahare Hedayat in 209 of Evin prison

Both Bahare Hedayat and Mohammad Hashemi are student activists of Office for Student Solidarity (daftare tahkim vahdat) , who were arrested by the Intelligence Ministry agents on 13 July 2008 and are now in 209 section of the notorious Evin prison.

According to reports from their families the two victims have been informed of their so called charges as "endangering National security", by the first branch prosecutor, judge Matin Rasekh , on 14 July.

The state news agency "IRNA", quoting judiciary officials, claimed that Bahare Hedayat and Mihammad Hashemi , had been alleged to have affiliations with opposition groups abroad. The Office for Student Solidarity, in defense of its two members has categorically denied charges made by government controlled media as an attempt to take revenge on the student movement.

In the current moth at least 20 students have been illegally arrested. In Mashad a group of students who had improvised a committee to examine arbitrary arrests of students, have themselves been victim to illegal arrests and were arrested. Five of the detainees have been released so far.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Execution of three Human Right activists ordered

The Iranian High Court announced the death penalty of a teacher and Human right activist , Farhad Kamangar , and two political activists- Farhad Vakili and Ali Heidarian- who are of Kurdish origins.

Apparently the Head of the Judiciary, Shahroodi has personally released the order.

The three human right activists had been arrested during a trip to Tehran in August of 2006.

The 36th so called revolutionary court, had previously sentenced Mr.Kamangar , after 19 months detention, to death for being a member of the PKK (Kurdish Workers Party).

Alireza Jamshidi spokesman of the Judiciary had announced on 27 May 2007, that Mr.Kamangar had been charged for membership in a terrorist organization, and with holding explosives.

After his sentence was delivered, Mr. Kamangar in a letter smuggled out, revealed that he had been tortured physically and mentally in the Intelligence Ministry detention centre. He had been tied to a bed and tortured and threatened to be raped.

Human right activists have already announced that Mr. Kamangar had been transferred twice to the prison clinic because of severe conditions resulting from torture.

Prior to this, Khalil Bahramian, and Mr. Kamangars' attorney had announced that they believe Mr.Kamangars' case is only a result of prejudice on Kurdish nationalists. He had rejected all accusations against his client.

Mr. Khalil Bahramian had also declared that his client had no knowledge whatsoever of explosives mentioned to have been found in his car. He had asserted that the aforementioned explosives had been implanted in his car in Tehran.

Teachers of Kamyaran province had collected a petition in support of the release of their colleague Farzad Kamangar. In their petition they had born witness to the fact that Mr.Kamangar had always been a law abiding citizen, and demanded the death sentence be annulled.

Farzad Kamangar has been a teacher in the Kamyaran province art college in Kurdistan. He was a member of the teachers' association, the environmentalists of Asak (meaning deer) . He was also a known writer in the monthly "Royan" of the Ministry of Education

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Mahboobeh Karami on Hunger strike

Mahboobeh Karami , a member of the 1 million petition project, which denounced sexual apartheid under the current regime in Iran, n a telephone call to her family, announced that she and 9 other women inmates have begun a hunger strike.

The reasons for their hunger strike was explained to be : deprivation of food, incommunicado and reluctance to be allowed any contact to protest their deteriorating conditions in their prison cells, and also the fact that no legal reason for their detention had been provided.

The ten women age between 17 to 70 years, have not been allowed a meeting with the prosecutor to enquire the reasons of their detention.

According to the Iranian Women's Movement site, Mr. Babaii, attorney to Ms.Karami approached the so called revolutionary court on July 6, to obtain given legal reasons for her detention, but in vain.

Mrs. Sedighe Masaebi, Mahboobeh Karamis' mother, 63 years old, has suffered deteriorating strokes because of her daughters' detention. In every approach for clarifications from the so called officials of the courts, she has been humiliated and has not been directed as to the reasons for her daughters' detention.

Ms. Karami , was harassed , beaten and arrested on 13 June , as she was travelling in a public bus, by "plain clothed agents" of the government.(A term used for trained special forces recruited by the Intelligence Ministry).

This bus was apparently passing along the gathered protest against deteriorating economic situation and poverty, in which around a 1000 people had participated. Practically all the passengers of the bus were beaten up. It is reported that at least 200 participants had been arrested that day by the security agents.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Transfer of an arrested activist to solitary confinement

Vida Dehganian , 30, a civil right activist, who was arrested on 13 June in front of the Melat park in a congregation, has been transferred to Evin prison.

Friends of Ms. Deghan , have said that she was transferred to the section after she had invoked a clash with security guards in the "women's section" of Evin prison on 23 June. The new section is under the Intelligence Ministry jurisdiction and it seems this move was aimed to put more pressure on Ms. Dehganian .

Vida Dehganian is a member of the Pan Iranian opposition party, which is considered illegal in Iran.

After the protest demonstration of people in Tehran on 13 June, which was against inflation and corruption of government Authorities, the Judiciary's spokesman, announced that 200 people had been arrested in that demonstration .

On 13 June at least 230 people were arrested in Mashad and their where-abouts is not clear. At least 5 students of Ferdowsi University of Mahshad had been amongst those arrested.

Amnesty International has released an appeal, expressing concern over the well being of Ms. Mahboobe Karami , an activist of the 1 million petition who had been in the same parkas those protesting and as consequence had been arrested.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

11 years sentence for supporting Human Rights

Mohammad Sedigh Kaboodvand , a journalist , has been sentenced to 11 years imprisonment, by the 5th Branch of the so called revolution Court , on charges of founding an organization to promote Human Rights.

"The lawyers to this case are protesting to the surprising sentence "said Mrs. Nasrin Sotudeh who is one of the attorneys to the case.
Mrs. Sotudeh insists, sentencing her client to 11 years imprisonment only for printing his thoughts, is in violation of the International Covenant of civil and political rights and Human rights.
Mr.Kaboodvand was called to the Court on 1 July 2007 in Tehran and was immediately arrested. He has been in prison since. He has been ill during this period and has suffered a stroke.
Prior to this Mr.Kaboodvand had been imprisoned for 6 months because of printing an article in the Payam newspaper .

Student arrested for visiting a relative in PMOI camp

Houd Yazerlou , 21, has been arrested after visiting his aunt in the Mojahedin Camp (called Ashraf in Iraq) after returning to Iran.

Numerous activists in Iran have released a statement protesting to Yazerlous' arbitrary arrest on 24 May 2008.

The statement reiterates concern over Mr.Yazerlous well being, saying "despite Mr.Majid Zarghamis' claim (prosecutor of the 2nd Security Branch of the so called revolutionary courts) that Mr.Yazerlou is in 209 Evin prison, there is no news of his real where-a bouts since his family's request to see him has continuously been refused and turned down.

Houd Yazerlou and his mother Nazila Dashti had visited Iraq 3 months ago to meet his aunt, who is a member of the People's Mojahedin organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) in Ashraf Camp.

According to Houd's Mother, Mrs. Dashti, they were both arrested after return. Mrs Dashti spent 21 days in prison, while her son was 16 days in prison. They were bailed out, each paying 200 Million and 100 million Tomans .

Nazilla Dashti adds that on 24 May, they were called informally through the person who had provided their bail to the Court for further inquiry, but Houd Yazerlou was arrested and taken way since.

Mrs. Dashti explained her ordeal while under "investigation":
"On our entering the building, we were harassed and humiliated and degraded continuously by the person who was to question us. He prevented my son from sitting down and kept him standing all through. He asked him: Are you in touch with other families of the Monafeghin? ( A term used to deface the Mojahedin in public by the Government authorities)

My child, who is not familiar with these terms and their intentions, simply answered "No sir, I know no Monafeghin".

The person who had by this time become extremely angry replied "What then?" , and my son replied : " They are Mojahedin ". This was enough to blow the top off that person. While throwing the paper and pen to my son, he said in a threatening tone "I will show you what I Mean …"

Nazila Dashti says Houd Yazerlou was sent to prison immediately after his so called interview and nothing has been heard so far of his where-abouts.

Nazilla Dashti and her husband Hani Yazerlou are former political prisoners and activists. Fariba and houd , sister and brother to Mrs.Dashti are amongst the victims of the great massacre of the political prisoners in 1988.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A woman activist sentenced to 5 years prison

21 year old Hana Abdi, former student of PayamNoor University of Bijar , and member of women's association of AzarMerh in Kurdistan (west of Iran) has been sentenced a 5 year prison term in a remote town on the Iranian frontiers.

According to Mr.Sharif , her attorney, the so called revolutionary court has charged her with assisting a crime which was to be a threat against National Security.

The attorney has rejected the charges and reiterated that Hana Abdi's activities have not been in any way related to violence and creating terror amongst people and therefore are irrelevant.

Ana was arrested in October 2007 in Sanandaj0 west of Iran along with her colleague Ronak Safar Zadeh, by the Iranian security agents. It is reported that both activists are undergoing sever pressure and torture to confess against themselves and their friends.

Although the government has related activities of both gender apartheid activists to external political parties, but their families insist that they are and have been independent and have no relation with any political party apposing the government.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

School boy condemned 6 months imprisonment for insulting the Leader

Moham Reza Avazpoor, a schoolboy has been charged with insulting the Leader and sentenced to 6 months imprisonment by the 118th branch of the penal Court.

Prior to this Mohamad Reza was sentenced to 5months prison in the 118th Branch of Tabriz Court presided by Niakar, on charges of being a member of a political group whose aim was to destabilize the State.

The first time he was charged with writing a slogan; "I am a Turk" on the walls, in the same court to 4 months detention on 31 of September 2007.

He had testified to have been tortured violently during detention. Inhuman punishment such as such as being hung upside down for 24 hours on end from the feet while being interrogated, and prevented from eating food or using the toilet were practiced on him.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Political prisoner's life at risk

Human Right activists in Iran have warned of Arjang Davoodi's health, a political prisoner, who has been on hunger strike in Rajaei Shahr prison, in the West of Iran.

Mrs Nazanin Davoodi, has attested to this fact, after she had visited her husband in prison on 16 June.
She reported that her husband had been brought for a visit on a wheel chair and could hardly speak. She insisted that her husband's physical condition is critical and that he needs to be looked after before it was too late.
After he began his hunger strike, Mr.Davoodi released a letter in which he described that prison officials had refused any treatment for his bleeding gum and deteriorating physical conditions.
Mr. Davoodin was arrested in 2003 under the charges of propagating against the system and endangering national security by founding an illegal political group. He was subsequently sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.
Prior to this, the State Prison Organization had defied its own regulation in "the separation of cases", and had transferred Mr. Davoodi to a prison in BandarAbbas amongst convicts.
This is a method used by the Ministry to crush the political prisoner's resistance.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Iranian authorities approved death of Teacher

Death sentence of a Kurdish dissident teacher, Farzad Kamangar has been approved by Iranian authorities.

Alireza Jamshidi spokesman of the Judiciary announced on 27 May 2007, that Mr.Kamangar has been charged for membership in a terrorist organization, and with holding explosives.

According to Jamshidi, Farzad Kamangar, Ali Heydarian, Farhad Vakili have been announced to be "moharebs"(rebels against God) and sentenced to death.

The three human right activists had been arrested during a trip to Tehran in August of 2006.

The 36th so called revolutionary court, sentenced Mr.Kamangar , after 19 months detention, to death for being a member of the PKK (Kurdish Workers Party).

After his sentence was delivered, Mr. Kamangar in a letter smuggled out, revealed that he had been tortured physically and mentally in the Intelligence Ministry detention centre. He had been tied to a bed and tortured and threatened to be raped.

Human right activists have already announced that Mr. Kamangar has been transferred twice to the prison clinic because of severe conditions resulting from torture.

Prior to this, Khalil Bahramian, and Mr. Kamangars' attorney had announced that they believe Mr.Kamangars' case is only a result of prejudice on Kurdish nationalists. He had rejected all accusations against his client.

Mr. Khalil Bahramian had also declared that his client has no knowledge whatsoever of explosives mentioned to have been found in his car. He had asserted that the aforementioned explosives had been implanted in his car in Tehran.

Teachers of Kamyaran province have collected a petition in support of the release of their colleague Farzad Kamangar. In their petition they have born witness to the fact that Mr.Kamangar has always been a law abiding citizen, and demanded the death sentence be annulled.

Farzad Kamangar has been a teacher in the Kamyaran province art college in Kurdistan. He was a member of the teachers' association, the environmentalists of Asak (meaning deer) . He was also a known writer in the monthly "Royan" of the Ministry of Education.

Friday, May 30, 2008

A Kurdish student is charged for supporting opposition party

Yasser Goli a Kurdish student, who was arrested in front of his University, in October 2007 in Sanandaj by the Intelligence Ministry agents, was trialed by the so called evolutionary court of Sanandaj.

Mr. Nemat Ahmadi, attorney to Yasser Goli who was present at the trial, said his client has been charged with attempting against national security by supporting the PJAK (Kurdish armed group opposed to Tehran, situated in military camps of the mountainous region between Turkey and Iran.)

According to Mr.Ahmadi, Yasser Goli has denied all the charges against him in the court.

Mr.Goli is the former General Secretary of the Democratic Union of Kurdish Students.

He was dined his scholarship by direct orders of the Intelligence Ministry.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Heshmatollah Tabarzadi is released

A journalist and director of a political organization critical of the Islamic Republic – the Democratic front of Iran- Mr.Heshmatollah Tabarzadi has been released after finishing seven years prison sentence from Evin prison on May 25 .

The democratic United Students' Front – a member of the Democratic Front, has announced that Mr.Tabarzadi had announced that officials had given no official reasons his detention.

It is reported that Mr.Tabarzadi has been told that his other sentence by the court which is 10 years of deprivation of social rights, would start on his release.

Mr.Tabarzadi, director of the confiscated Payam Daneshjoo publication, who had been repeatedly arrested in the past, was sentenced to 14 years imprisonment in July of 2003.

The 26th so called revolutionary court had sentenced Mr.Tabarzadi to 10 years prison, for founding the Democratic Front, two years for insulting the Spiritual Leader, one year for propagating against the State, one year for disturbing public opinion, and an extra 10 years punishment of social deprivation.

The appeal court shortened the sentence to 7 years on the whole.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Political prisoner double trialed for "insulting Islamic scared s"

Hamidreza Mohammadi, who has been sentenced to 6 years imprisonment by the 13th Branch of the so called revolutionary courts on 20 June 2006 , is sentenced to another 5 years.

His second court was held to prosecute him on charges of "insulting Islamic sacreds" for an extra 5 year imprisonment.

Mr.Mohammadi was charged to have stamped the word "Invalidated", on all pages of the 7 editions of the Koran and having sent them to Islamic institutes.

Prior to this, Mr.Mohammadi had been charged with membership in a group called the Iranian kingship association for 6 years imprisonment.

Mr. Mohammadi declares that he has been charged and sentenced twice for one case, without the presence of a lawyer.

In the begging of his arrest he had spent 6 months in the 209 section and then was transferred to the public ward of Evin prison. Government agents had arrested his family at the time of his arrest.

Mr.Mohammadi has committed suicide twice, not withstanding psychological and physical pressures in 209.