Documenting Human Rights Violations in Challenging Environments

The fifth question in the 5WS+H is WHY did this event take place? Answering the “why” requires you to analyze the reasons behind an incident, such as what caused the event to take place? To identify the why, look for causes and motivations.

Read the following passage and identify possible reasons why Ghadiyani has been transferred to a different prison. If your “why” answer is speculative rather than factual, state that clearly. See possible answers below the passage:

“Today's letter urges the head of the judiciary, Ayatollah Sadegh Larijani, to intervene in the transfer order issued by Judge Salavati, whom the prisoners accused of malicious intent against Ghadiyani. The letter adds that, in addition to Ghadiyani's rights being violated, seven other prisoners, the jailed Nematollah dervishes, have also been taken to solitary and are now being held incommunicado. Ghadiyani has been very vocal in his criticism of the government's treatment of political prisoners and the opposition movement, and his recent public letters addressed to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei appear to have won him serious repercussions in jail.” (Source)

Why was Ghadiyani moved?

Based on this passage, we do not have a clear understanding of why Ghadiyani was moved. This forces us to infer the “why” based upon what we do know. For example, we know that other prisoners claim he was moved because he criticized the government’s treatment of political prisoners and the opposition movement. We also know that he wrote a series of letters to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei that criticized the treatment of political prisoners. This may have been all or part of the reason why he was moved. The passage notes that other prisoners have also been moved. This could indicate that political prisoners are moved as a form of punishment for behavior; however, we do not have enough evidence to support this claim outright.