Friday, October 30, 2009

Latest Reports on Prisoners

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Human Rights Activists in Iran

The families of political prisoners held today their previously announced gathering. They gathered outside the Tehran Prosecutor’s office holding pictures of their imprisoned loved ones. Families of about 80 prisoners were present at the gathering including families of: Fariba Pajooh, Hengameh Shahidi, Mohammad-Ali Abtahi, Mostafa Taj-Zadeh, Mohsen Mir-Damadi, Masood Bastni, Mohsen Safayi-Farahani, Hossein Bastani-Nejad, Saeed Laylaz, Abdollah Momeni and Bahman Amoui. A delegation met with Tehran Prosecutor and informed him of their concerns and complaints. The prosecutor, Jafari took note of their complaints and promised to follow up on them. He also gave assurances to speed up the process of the prisoners’ files. Security forces stopped the people who wanted to join the families. The gathering lasted until 2 pm and there have been no reports of arrests. The families of prisoners left after chanting Allah-o-Akbar. The detained journalist, Fariba Pajooh started a hunger strike on Monday the same time Hegameh Shahidi another detained journalist started hers. The two women shared their cell before. Fariba Pajooh started her hunger strike to protest her situation; almost 4 months after her arrest she is still in limbo. She met with her family for a short time last Monday after her visit was canceled the previous week. Hegameh Shahidi the other journalist on hunger strike said her transfer to a ward reserved for common prisoners was done to humiliate her. Shahidi has stopped to take her medications which can have serious consequences for her health. There has been no official reaction by the Judiciary to their hunger strike and both journalists are held with no resolution in sight.

The conditions of Hamed Rouhi-Nejad and Jafar Ebrahimi have deteriorated in prison. Rouhi-Nejad who is suffering from Mutiple Sclerosis has almost lost sight in his right eye. Jafar Ebrahimi has had several panic attacks; further details have emerged on the reasons that led to riots in Karaj’s Rajai-Shahr Prison. A prison guard named Marjani, who was acting on his own, had refused to let a diabetic inmate have his insulin injection. Other prisoners who were not happy with the guard’s decision reacted and riots broke out inside prison. After 4 months of investigation, the cases of Mohsen Mir-Damadi and Mostafa Taj-Zadeh have been sent to District 15 of the Revolutionary Court. Mir-Damadi is the Secretary General of the Mosharkat Party whereas Tajzedeh is a member of the central council of the same party. Houshang Babai-Pour the defense lawyer said no date has been yet set for the hearing but Judge Salavati will be the presiding judge. The secretary general of the organization of graduate students, Ahmad Zaid-Abadi called his wife briefly this morning after being held incommunicado for the last 45 days. During the phone call which lasted two minutes, Zaid-Abadi was able to tell his wife that 4 and half months into his arrest, he was still being held in solitary confinement. Mahdieh Mohammadi who was not able to visit her husband yet again said: “I was told by the prosecutor’s office that I could meet him today but the interrogator opposed the visit again”.

Outside Tehran at Rajai-Shahr Prison, Yaser Majidi’s condition has been reported critical. Majidi was arrested in 2001 and sentenced to 28 years in prison, he suffers from Asthma. Majidi has spent over 5 years of his prison term in exile at Birjand Prison. Prison officials are refusing to allow his treatment even inside prison clinic. His asthma is being used to torture him physically and emotionally. Ali-Reza Jafarian who is the defense lawyer for the post election detainee, Iman Sohrab-Pour said that his client has been sentenced to 3 years fixed prison term. He added that he has 20 days to file an appeal which he intends to do in the coming days. Sohrab-Pour has a multitude of charges which include: acting against state security by participating in gatherings that disturbed public security; spreading doubt about the election results; causing public mistrust in authorities; disturbing public order by taking part in riots and unusual activities; spreading terror and fear in the society; distributing provocative CDs and flyers among protesters and rioters. Amnesty International has voiced concern over the situation of Mohammad Maleki. The Iranian authorities must release a 76-year-old scholar held incommunicado for 41 days, apparently for his peaceful criticism of the Iranian presidential election, said Amnesty International. Amnesty has also voiced concern over the state of Maleki’s health. Amnesty International said that it considers him to be a prisoner of conscience, held solely for the peaceful expression of his views.