Student activist Arash Sadeghi, born on September 29, 1986, a member of Mir Hossein Mousavi’s 2009 presidential campaign and a member of Allameh University Students› Islamic Association, was a philosophy student when expelled from Allameh University.
Following is but a sliver of the unimaginable, painful life of this student activist as chronicled by «Nameh Beh Yek Azadeh» blog:
Tir 1388 (June 22 – July 22, 2009
His first arrest was after the 2009 presidential election on July 8, 2009. After fifty days under torture in solitary confinement, which he may give a full account of later himself, he was released alongside a less traveled road in Tehran.
In describing the horrific tortures that Arash suffered, pointing to only one of them might just be enough: He was forced to lick a toilet bowl.
Day 1388 (December 22, 2009 – January 20, 2010)
Following the bloody events of Ashura protests in December of 2009, Arash was once again arrested on December 27, 2009. He was later released on bail March 6, 2010.
While out on furlough, in conversation with relatives, he spoke of the «severe beatings in prison, and severely damaged right shoulder as a result of the beatings».
At that time, he had been sentenced by Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court to three years in prison.
Farvardin 1389 (March 20 – April 20, 2010)
In March 2010, after the expiration of his furlough period, Arash returned to prison and, for long time after that, was banned from visits and phone calls.
According to his family, the reasons for him not being allowed visits and phone calls were, publication of the news of his conviction and sentence to three years imprisonment, plus, published accounts of his being physically assaulted during his previous incarceration.
At that time, his family voiced concern and worry for his well-being in light of not being able to see him or phone him.
Aban 1389 (October 23 – November 21, 2010)
After one year of incarceration and torture, Arash was released on furlough. But, after only a few days, with no advance notice of his furlough being revoked, nor any phone calls from the Judiciary ordering him back to prison, agents raided Arash’s home at 4:00 AM on October 26 to arrested him. He wasn’t home.
The trauma of this raid resulted in Arash’s mother suffering a heart attack, from which she died few days later.
Four days after the raid, Arash’s mother, Farahnaz Dargahi died in the hospital on October 30, 2010. She was buried in Beheshte Zahra cemetery in lot 311, row 119, grave number 23.
On November 15, 2010, prior to his arrest, Arash, criticizing the raid on their home, told BBC Persian, «Each time I received a summons from the Magistrate at Evin prison, I went there. I don’t know why they carried out such action this time.»
Arash, who was suffering from the pressure of the sudden sad and sorrowful death of his mother, told BBC in the same interview, «I have paid a high price. I would rather go to prison! For me, conditions inside the prison are better than out! The pressure from my family that blames me for the death of my mother is a lot of stress to endure.»
Arash Sadeghi was sentenced by Branches 28 and 26 of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court to three and six years in prison, respectively.
The Court of Appeals overturned the 3 year sentence and exonerated him of all charges in that case. The six year sentence was also overturned by the Appeals Court and was changed to 1 year in prison and four years suspended sentence.
Azar 1389 (November 22 – December 21, 2010)
After Arash issued a statement December 7 on the occasion of Students› Day, he was physically assaulted and beaten by the interrogators at Ward 209 of Evin prison and, once again, he sustained injuries in his shoulder and ribs.
The interrogators refused to allow him to be treated at Evin’s clinic. As a result of this and to protest their action, Arash launched a hunger strike on December 10, 2010.
In a note that he sent out from Ward 209 in Evin prison on the occasion of Students› Day, Arash wrote, «If we say that we do not recognize this illegitimate, illegal government that came into power based on lies, slander and cheating, and if we call for a healthy and fair election, monitored by observers and the real people; we are considered Moharebs (enmity against God) and anti-revolutionary.»
Day 1389 (December 2010 – January 2011)
After fourteen days on hunger strike, Arash ended his hunger strike on December 24, 2010 and was transferred to the General Ward 350 in Evin prison.
But on December 31, 2010, he was suddenly transferred back to the high security Ward 209 solitary confinement, where he was once again beaten severely by the Intelligence Ministry’s agents. Four days later he was returned to Ward 350, severely injured and bruised. At this point he could not move his right arm, could barely walk and also suffered from stomach bleeding and had a lung infection.
Esfand 1389 (February 20 – March 20, 2011)
Just as in the past, Arash was under pressure and torture by the interrogators based on false and trumped up charges.
This time, the interrogators were pressuring him to deny that death of his mother was due to the trauma and shock of her home being raided, and also to deny his press interviews from last November.
To protest all the pressures and tortures he was under, Arash once again launched a hunger strike on March 14. Due to his poor health as a result of all the tortures he had suffered, and the stress of being on hunger strike, Arash’s health became dire and he suffered from body trembles and loss of consciousness. As a result, Evin officials transferred him to Evin clinic.
Farvardin 1390 (March 21 – April 20, 2011)
Arash spent the Iranian New Year (Nowruz) in pain and poor health in Ward 209 solitary confinement.
Khordad 1390 (May 22 – June 21, 2011)
After the martyrdom of Hale Sahabi, National-Religious activists Hoda Saber and Amir Khosro Dalirsani launched a hunger strike. Arash along with other political prisoners, Mehdi Khodaei, Ahmad Shahrezaei, Payman Aref, Shahin Zainali and Javad Alikhani started a hunger strike on June 5 to protest the death of Hale Sahabi.
Arash, along with Khodaei and Shahrezaei had originally intended to end their hunger strike on June 12, but after the martyrdom of Hoda Saber on hunger strike, the trio decided to remain on their hunger strike to protest the violent death of Hoda Saber.
Azar 1390 (November 22 – December 20, 2011)
Arash, who had been sentenced to one year in prison and four years suspended sentence, was finally released from Ward 350 of Evin prison on December 14 after spending more than 22 months, most of which were under pressure and torture in solitary confinement in the high security ward of Evin prison.
At time of his release, Arash was on hunger strike in solidarity with the political prisoners who were in need of medical care that was not being provided.
He was released from prison, after he had lost his mother and his family had been torn apart, their lives shattered.
Day 1390 (December 2011 – January 2012)
Before long, Arash is once again arrested by security agents on the morning of January 15, 2011 while visiting his mother’s grave site with his grandparents.
This violent arrest included insults and assaults which resulted in Arash suffering a skull fracture.
Khordad 1391 (May 21 – June 20, 2012)
To date, since his last arrest on January 15, 2011, Arash has been incarcerated in Ward 209 solitary confinement. Other than one very short phone conversation few days after his arrest, which was monitored by security guards and a five minutes visit with his grandfather on May 24, Arash has had no contact with his family since this latest arrest.
During the last visit with his grandfather, Aresh said that he had been interrogated every 3 weeks, and also announced that in solidarity and in support for Hossein Ronaghi Maleki he will launch a hunger strike.