Monthly Archives: November 2012

Nasrin Sotoude’s Husband Warns About Her Grave Health Condition

Nasrin Sotoudeh’s husband, Reza Khandan on day 41 of her hunger strike warns about the seriousness of her grave condition.

Voicing his concern, Reza Khandan wrote on his Facebook page: “I do not intent to cause worry for our friends, but I sense danger and feel a warning must be given.”

Mr. Khandan adds, “Nasrin entered her forty-first day of hunger strike yesterday (November 26) and her health condition has reached a dangerous stage.”

Nasrin’s husband explains, “Yesterday Nasrin was taken to the medical clinic at Evin, and from now on they intend to take her to the clinic everyday. Her blood pressure was so low that the person taking her pressure could not read it and couldn’t tell her what her pressure was.

The Judicial officials can go on denying everything, but truth always will prevail and will collapse on those who pretend ignorance.

Explanations, projecting blames onto others, and changing of the facts will not solve any problems. Nasrin is not asking for anything illegal, she is saying, “Why are you punishing our 12 year old child because of her mother?”

So far, no one from this vast Judicial system has given an answer to this legal and self-evident question.”

Nasrin Sotoudeh, a lawyer and human rights activist, launched a hunger strike on October 17, 2012, protesting pressures put on her family; banning her 12 year old daughter from leaving the country, denial of the right for her mother to visit her in prison over the past year, denial of in-person visits with her husband and children, and denial of use of a telephone.

Despite requests from friends and various political and civil activists urging her to halt her hunger strike, she Insists on continuing her hunger strike and is now in a dangerous physical situations.

Previously she had made the statement, “I can not just sit here and let them do what ever they please to my children and husband.”

Source: GVF

Denial Of Medical Treatment To Incarcerated Gonabadi Dervishes Lawyers

Not being sent to the hospital in time has caused hearing loss in the left ear of imprisoned lawyer Omid Behroozi, a member of the Gonabadi Dervishes.

This political prisoner has been imprisoned in Evin Ward 350 for fifteen months without being tried, is suffering from arthritis in his 5th and 6th vertebra and ear aches caused by blows to the head and neck during his arrest. Due to the harsh conditions of Evin Ward 240 solitary confinement, and the cold damp cells, his condition has worsened.

Behroozi was incarcerated in solitary confinement at Ward 240 for sixty days and the officials ignored his pleas regarding his health condition. They even refused to deliver blankets to him. This inattention to his condition has caused damage to the auditory nerve in his left ear.

It is noteworthy that after repeated requests for treatment, he was examined by doctors at Taleghani hospital and was told his condition can easily be treated by medication such as Cortone.

Afshin Karampour, Farshid Yadollahi and Amir Aslani are the other Gonabadi Dervishes lawyers that are held in Ward 350 that are deprived of needed medical treatment and attention.

Farshid Yadollahi has been waiting 13 months to receive dental treatment, and has been waiting 5 months to be sent to hospital for surgery.

Amir Aslani was sent to Masih Daneshvar hospital in September for treatment of a heart condition but due to prison officials refusing to pay for the cost, he did not receive treatment and has been suffering with heart condition for three months.

For over a year, Afshin Karampour has lost his mobility due to a torn tendon in his leg and is suffering in Ward 350 without ever having been tried.

Source: Kalameh

Eleven Baha’is Sentenced To Prison In Mashhad

Eleven Baha’is tried last month by the Mashhad Revolutionary Court on charges of Propagating Against the Establishment, were convicted by presiding Judge Ghorbani and have each been sentenced to six months imprisonment.

Following is the list of people that were sentenced to prison in Mashhad:

1- Fataneh Hajipour

2- Navid Nabili

3- Ezatallah Ahmadian

4- Negin Ahmadian

5- Shazad Khalili

6- Naghmeh Zabihian

7- Negar Malekzadeh

8- Behnaz Hadadzadeh

9- Horiyeh Mohseni

10- Arman Mokhtari

11- shayan Tafzali

Also, Horiyeh Mohseni Negar Malekzadeh and Negin Ahmadian were fined 300,000 Tomans for possession of satellite dish and accessories.

Source: HRANA

Eight Members Of The Pan-Iranist Party Arrested

The Pan-Iranist Youth Organization reports: Thursday evening the home of Reza Kermani was raided and ten members of the Paniranist party were arrested and taken to the police station in Shahrak Naz in Karaj.

Two of the arrested were released few hours later but the other eight people were taken to an undisclosed location.

The Pan-Iranist party announced the names of the detainees as follows:

Hojat Kalashi, Ozhen Akbari, Farhad Baghbani, Kasra Alasavand, Hooman Eskandari, Hossein Shahriyari, Alireza Solaimani and Hossein Javid.

According to this report, agents raided the home of Reza Kermani and after a complete search of the home, confiscated personal items including books, tapes, CD’s, laptop, computer and family pictures.

Source: GVF

Nasrin Sotoudeh’s husband: “Nasrin Continues to Be On Hunger Strike”

After several weeks of being banned from visits, Reza Khandan was permitted to have a cabin visit with his wife Nasrin Sotoudeh.

Nasrin Sotoudeh who was incarcerated in solitary confinement for nineteen days before being moved back to the General Ward has said, “I can not just sit and do nothing while they do what ever it is the please to my family and I.”

Nasrin’s husband Reza Khandan has written a post on his Facebook page about this visit, “She has lost a lot of weight and now weighs 43 Kilos (94.6 lbs). I gave her the messages from friends and supporters as much as I could.

I thought I may be able to convince her to break her hunger strike by giving her these messages. She said, “If I hadn’t gone on a hunger strike they (the regime) had further plans for my family. Fabricating a case for a twelve year old child, just because of her mother is something I just can not digest.” Says she, who has worked a lifetime defending children’s rights.

In short, she is upset about these fabricated cases. I asked her how long is she planning to be on hunger strike? She replied, “I am on an open ended hunger strike; do you know what open ended means?”…I said, “No I don’t.”

Source: GVF

21 Earthquake Volunteer Aid Workers Arrested at Sarand Camp Will Go On Trial Monday November 19

After more than three months in the Intelligence Ministry’s detention in Tabriz, the 21 Sarand camp earthquake volunteer aid workers have been summoned by the Revolutionary Court to go on trial.

According to Kalameh, Branch One of the Tabriz Revolutionary Court, presided over by Judge Ghati Hamlbar, will try:

Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, Hassan Ronaghi Maleki, Behrouz Alavi, Hamidreza Mosibian, Farid Rohani, Vahed Kholosi, Shayan Vahdati, Navid Khanjani, Masoud Vafabakhsh, Hooman Taheri, Sepehr Saheban, Daniel Hasani, Ali Mohamadi, Morteza Esmaeilpour, Mohamad Arjmandirad, Mohamad Esmaeil Salmanpour, Mohamad Amin Salehi, Mohsen Saaemi, Milad Panahboud, Amir Ronasi, Bahram Shojaei

Their trial, on charges of participating in collusion and conspiracy to commit crimes against the national security, participating in threats against public health, and participation in defiance of police officers orders, will be on Monday November 19, 2012.

Previously, the Judicial and police officials had announced the charges for these aid workers as propagating Baha’isim and Wahhabism, spying for foreign media, and distribution of spoiled food items.

One of the defendants in this case, Navid Khanjani, is currently incarcerated in Rejaei Shahr prison in Karaj and will be taken to Tabriz for the trial.

According to the defense attorneys, the main defendant in this case is Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, a human rights activist who was a volunteer aid worker at the earthquake-stricken areas, while he was out on bail on medical furlough.

source: Kalameh

The Officials Now Say She Is Not In Ward 209, Says Reza Khandan, Nasrin Sotoudeh’s Husabnd

While incarcerated rights attorney Nasrin Sotoudeh was allowed a prison visit with her children on Monday, today, her family was denied a visit with her.

According to the Green Voice of Freedom, Nasrin’s husband, Reza Khandan was not permitted to accompany his children during their visit Monday with their mother.

According to a post on Reza Khandan’s Facebook, he went to Evin today but was not permitted to visit her. Nasrin was transferred to solitary confinement 15 days ago.

Nasrin Sotoudeh has been imprisoned since September 4, 2010. She was tried and convicted on charges of acting against the national security, propagating against the regime, and membership in The Defenders of Human Rights Center. She was sentenced to six years imprisonment, banned from practicing law and banned from leaving the country for 20 years, and also fined 50,000 Tomans for not observing the Islamic code of attire (Hijab).

Following is a translation of Reza Khandan’s post on his Facebook:

“Today, Thursday, for the second week in a row I went to Evin attempting to visit my wife. Thursdays are visiting days for the prisoners incarcerated in Ward 209.

Despite the fact that Nasrin was transferred to this ward 15 days ago, they claim she is not their prisoner.

Despite the fact that none of the people in charge of that ward (Evin Ward 209) will admit that she is in their custody, Evin prison authorities claim that Nasrin is in the custody of Ward 209.

Despite the fact that it is now evident that no official visitation banning order has been issued for her, they continue to bar her from visits.

They no longer even adhere to their own made-up rules and do everything they can to put additional pressure on the prisoners’ families and show no hesitation in this regard.

And when they are left with the corpse of a young man like Sattar Beheshti, they start the blame game.”

Source: GVF

Nasrin Sotoudeh’s Husband: I Urge The Authorities To Move Her To The General Ward, Before It’s Too Late.

Incarcerated Rights Attorney Nasrin Sotoudeh was granted a short visit with her children on Monday. However, her husband was not granted permission to accompany the children for this visit.

Reza Khandan, Nasring’s husband gave an interview on Sunday to Jaras news site voicing his concern regarding Nasrin being incarcerated in solitary confinement while on a hunger strike.

Following is translation of the interview conducted by Jaras with Nasrin Sotoudeh’s husband, Reza Khandan on Sunday November 11th:

Mr. Khandan did you have a visit with Mrs. Sotoudeh today?

“This morning we finally received a letter from the Prosecution indicating that the children have been granted face-to-face meeting with their mother. But after waiting three to four hours (in Evin’s waiting room), the administrative office closed for the day and we left without the children having seeing their mother.”

Despite an approval letter from the Prosecutor, why do you think they did that?

“I really don’t know, they never give us any reason.

Our experience shows that if they want something to happen, they will make it happen in 2-3 minutes, but if they don’t intend for it to happen or they just want to harass or make things difficult for us, they won’t. Just like today, despite orders from the Prosecutor, the children were not able to see their mother.”

When was the last time you were able to visit your wife?

“Of course, my intention on Monday last week was not just to visit her. I had asked the officials to allow me to see her so I could perhaps convince her to halt her hunger strike. I have no more information or news about her since that date.

I only know that the prison officials went to the general ward (Ward 350), collected from the cellmates a book, prescription glasses, and a heating pad, and gave them to her.

Of course this very bad news for us. It shows that her cell is without minimum facilities and is cold. Probably due to her hunger strike, her blood pressure dropped, and she suffers physical weakness and chills, thus the reason for the heating pad.”

What was her physical condition?

“You can’t even imagine how weak she had become. She was weak prior to launching the hunger strike and her condition is now even worse. Her condition is extremely worrisome.

The fact that they didn’t bring her for a visit today, shows that she is probably not in a good condition, was perhaps in the clinic, or her condition was so dire that the officials deemed our visit should not take place.

In any case, until we actually see her we won’t know her condition. I sincerely hope that the officials promptly return her to the General Ward and/or grant us a visit.”

How long has it been since your wife was transferred to Ward 209 Solitary Confinement?

“Since Sunday last week when they “Illegally” transferred my wife to Ward 209 (under the control of the Intelligence Ministry).

This section is for newly arrested people who are going under interrogation and investigation. My wife is serving her sentence. So transferring her to this Ward is illegal. In addition, they have illegally denied her visitation rights.

Also, the recently issued punishment order only indicated transfer solitary confinement, and does not mention Ward 209 nor does it contain a ban on visits.”

Do you know if the messages from various political and civil activists urging her to halt her hunger strike have reached her?

“No not at all. Just think, she is confined within four walls, has absolutely no contact with the outside world and does not have any news from anywhere.”

Do you think the officials have told her that the other female political prisoners have halted their hunger strike?

“Certainly she does not know. Even if the officials have told her about them ending their hunger strike, she does not trust them and will not believe them. She will not believe this news until she hears it from her own family.

Although, my wife’s hunger strike was not related to the the other female political prisoners’ hunger strike, if she still thinks they are on hunger strike, she won’t break her hunger strike.”

If they allow you to visit her and tell her that the other women political prisoners have halted their hunger strike, and tell her of all the others urging her to halt her strike, do you think she will?

“I do hope they grant us a visit so I can inform her of all of these and try to convince her to halt her hunger strike. Of course my wife wants these cases to be closed. She is especially upset about the case of our daughter.

Unfortunately our last meeting took place in a more crowded atmosphere and I was not able to speak with her, but she was calmer than the previous visits. For this reason, I requested that they grant her a visit with myself, together with the children, so I could try to convince her to halt her hunger strike. Unfortunately they would did not allow us the visit.”

Would you like to say anything else?

Well, when a prisoner who is on a hunger strike in the general ward, and encounters health problems, in an emergency case, their cellmates can inform the authorities. Then if necessary, the prisoner be taken to the medical clinic. Unfortunately, Nasrin is in Ward 209 solitary confinement, and only very few times this has occurred (taking her to the clinic).

If Nasrin was in the general ward with the other female political prisoners, they could have tried to convince her to break her hunger strike, or even messages from others could reach her urging her to stop her hunger strike.

But now, in the current situation, she is in solitary confinement and her contact with others has been cut off. Since nothing is predictable; something awful may happen to her at any moment. For this reason, we urge the authorities to take action and transfer her to the General Ward at Evin, before it’s too late.”

Source: Jaras

Dr. Mehdi Khazali’s Son: They Claim My Father Is Not On A Hunger Strike But Don’t Allow Him To Call

Dr. Mehdi Khazali was re-arrested on October 30, 2012 in a raid of the Pen Society meeting. Dr. Khazali, an Ophthalmologist, author and regime critic, has been arrested six times before. On his last arrest he launched a hunger strike that lasted more than seventy days.

Dr. Khazali had earlier predicted this latest arrest . In an entry on his personal blog, he said if arrested again, he would immediately launch a dry hunger strike. ( Here )

Dr. Mehdi Khazali's Son: They Claim My Father Is Not On A Hunger Strike But Don't Allow Him To Call

Dr. Mehdi Khazali

Following is an interview conducted by Kalameh with Dr. Khazali’s son regarding his father’s situation:

What is the latest news from your father?

We have no news from him since his arrest, other than a few of his friends who had been arrested and saw him in Evin. My father told them he is in the basement of Ward 209 and has launched a dry hunger strike. We have no other news from him since. He has not called us and last Thursday they would not allow us to visit him.

Have you followed up with the Judiciary officials and have they given you any response?

The Magistrate’s office in Evin is not a place to get any information. We did go to the Magistrate’s office in Evin but they told us they have nothing to say to us. No one is giving us any answer.

And do you think that Mr. Khazali will remain on a hunger strike just as he did in previous times?

Yes, he will continue his hunger strike until such time that he is either released or……Last time Mr. Hashemi urged him to halt his hunger strike. But now there is no way for us to communicate with him to ask him to halt his hunger strike. We don’t know anything about his situation, we don’t know if he is well or not, we don’t know if he is receiving medical attention, we don’t know anything.

Last time Mr. Khazali’s mother pursued his case, and according to Mr. Khazali, it was effective. Is his family (his mother) doing the same this time?

As far as I know they have not. Only that my grandmother has made a phone call and they told her, “Mr. Mehdi is doing fine and he is not on a hunger strike and we checked on him everyday”.

Do you mean they gave you false information?

In previous times they did the same thing. They would call and tell us he is not on a hunger strike. Last time they told my grandmother that news of him being on a hunger strike is false. But according to his medical records there and his day by day weight loss, it was apparent that he was on a hunger strike.

They are saying the same thing this time, that he is in good condition, is not on a hunger strike and that they check on him. But my dad has not called us, and knowing my dad, he is on a hunger strike.

If there is even one percent chance that he is not on a hunger strike, as worried as we are, why don’t they allow him to contact us and tell us he is not on a hunger strike. We feel that, when they don’t allow him to contact us, then he must be in a poor condition, and that’s the reason for them not allowing him to call us. So we won’t hear this news.

Do you have any news about the rest of the people who were arrested that night?

There were about 80 people arrested that night. All except 17-18 of them have since been released.
Afshin Ghorbaninejad, Mohamad Parsi, Mohamad Bagher Moradi, Hamidreza Soalimani were released on Eid Ghadir. Akbar Amini, Pezhman Zafarmand, Mehdi Karimi, Majid Saeed Arab, Hojatollah Nakhostin and Javad Amoli…I don’t have the presence of mind right now; I cant remember.

From the 80 or so people they arrested that night, they detained these 17-18 people. They transferred them to Evin the next day on Wednesday and then to the Court in Evin. I have heard that they initially issued temporary detention orders, then set bail for them.

In any case, they did set bail for them, like 20 million for one detainee and 30 million for another. They told them to call their families from Evin and tell them to go post bail on Sunday. They told some of them to tell their families to go there on Thursday to post bail.

On Thursday families waited at Evin from 8 to 11 in the morning, but a Judge never showed up at the Evin Court. The guards kept asking people to wait. I myself also went there but didn’t see a Judge there. Apparently the Evin Court is closed on Thursdays. That afternoon they told everyone to leave and come back on Sunday.

On Sunday when families attempted to post bail the Judge told them, “I told you to bring bail but didn’t tell you when”.

At first they didn’t allow anyone to go inside. My mother was also there, but she was not allowed to enter either. My mother pleaded with them and told them how very worried we all are, and that we have no news from my dad. But they didn’t answer her at all, they didn’t give any answer to the others either, and no one has yet been released.

Since few days ago, they have started conducting searches of the homes of some of the detainees. They searched Mohamad Parsi’s home taking him there with them. They have also conducted search of Mohamad Bagher Moradi’s home. These are the two that I know of. They confiscated their personal items and computers. One of them said he is in a cell in Ward 209 with 4-5 other people.

Have they interrogated him (His father)?

I don’t know.

Considering that they will most probably read your interview with Kalameh, do you have anything to say to them?

Please allow us to visit my dad, let him call us, or at least give us some news about him. We are very worried. There was no reason for his re-arrest and he had previously been released by the order of the Supreme Leader. I don’t know if the Leader is aware of this matter, but we are trying to inform him of this latest arrest.

End of interview with Kalameh.

Dr. Mehdi Khazali’s son, in an interview with the Melli-Mazhabi site, told them that on the 8th day of his arrest, they know he was on a hunger strike, but have not had any more news from him since.

He said, “We went to Evin twice trying to find some information about him. The first time they said he in not in Evin, and the second time they said he is there and is doing fine. He is denied phone calls, denied visits, denied everything.

They told us he is being interrogated, but the last time he was incarcerated they allowed him to contact us while undergoing interrogations. This is not a reason for them not to allow him to call us.

One of the people that was detained in Evin told us that, as of the 8th day of incarceration, he was on a hunger strike and not in a good condition.

Knowing my father, and considering the past history of his hunger strikes, he will continue until he falls unconscious. This is why we are so concerned and worried for him. My question is, if he is doing well and is not on a hunger strike, then why do they not allow him to contact us?”

Sources: Kalameh MeliMazhabi

A Report From The Burial Of Blogger Sattar Beheshti Killed Under Torture In Custody

35 years old blogger, Sattar Beheshti was arrested on October 30 at his home in Robat Karim. His family was contacted by authorities on November 6th informing them of his death in custody without giving any further explanation or the cause of death.

A Report From The Burial Of Blogger Sattar Beheshti Killed Under Torture In Custody

Sattar Beheshti

Following is an interview with an eye witness conducted by Saham News:

Saham News: An eye witness who attended Sattar Beheshti’s funeral told Saham News that Beheshti’s body showed visible signs on injuries.

According to this witness, Sattar Beheshti’s leg and knees were bloody, his face was bruised and he had head injuries.

According to this witness, Sattar Beheshti’s face and head showed signs of severe injuries and his shroud was blood soaked.

Unfortunately the officers did not allow his family to see his body prior to burial. Only for a few minutes after they placed the body in the grave, they removed the shroud from his face. According to this witness Beheshti’s face was bruised and head showed visible signs of severe injuries that they had tried to cover-up with plaster.

The severity of the assault and battery that Beheshti suffered was very visible on his body and was observed during the ritual cleansing bath of his body.

According to Saham News, Sattar Beheshti was buried at the Shrine of Mohammad Taghi in Robat Karim, section 7, row 3, grave number 11.

Also, despite threats from officials, a memorial ceremony is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. on Friday at his grave site at the Shrine of Mohammad Taghi in Robat Karim .

In the last few days, the officials have been threatening the family not to hold any memorial services for this Green activist.

According to Saham News, a large number of agents were present in various locations at the Shrine of Mohammad Taghi during the burial services. They were video taping the crowd and, in some cases, confronting the people who were speaking on their cell phones.

Also, there are reports that a large number of agents are present in the neighborhood were Sattar lived. They have also removed and collected all the banners and posters relating to Sattar’s death and memorial services.

All contact with Beheshti’s family have been cut off.

Saham News also reports that during a phone interview yesterday with Sattar Beheshti’s sister, agents entered her home and handcuffed her and the phone line was disconnected. They detained Sahar Beheshti for a while and warned her not to speak with the media.

Sattar Beheshti’s father was also present at the burial services, and was crying out with loud voice, “Do not cry for my son, for if he had committed a sin he was killed justly, but if he was unjustly killed then God will avenge his death.”

According to eye witnesses, yesterday when Sattar’s brother-in-law went to collect his body from the medical examiner’s office, the agents confiscated his cell phone and, each time a reporter called, they pretended to be him, telling the reporters that Sattar is alive and is in a hospital.

Source: Sahamnews