Nabz Weekly - November 15, 2013

This week in human rights in Iran

FREEDOM OF THE PRESS

On November 11, Ali Asghar Gharavi, the author of the article that resulted in the banning of the Bahar newspaper and the arrest of its editor in chief, was arrested in Isfahan. The article was considered offensive towards Islamic ideology by the Iranian regime and some Islamic clerics.  

MINORITY RIGHTS

This week, Shamim Rouhani along with other followers of the Baha’i faith were arrested in Ahwaz. At the time of arrest, police also confiscated books, computers and CD’s. All those arrested were released, except for Rouhani. In similar news, On November 11, the Baha’i International Community released a statement expressing their concerns regarding the safety of 14 Baha’is arrested in the city of Abadeh last month. During the time of their arrest, police told them that they should leave  as they might be attacked by locals. The statement described this action by the police as, “creating an atmosphere of intimidation and fear.”

This week, the revolutionary court in Mahabad sentenced Khosro Kordpour, a Kurdish journalist and political activist, to six years in prison on charges of illegal gathering and propaganda against the regime. His brother Masoud Kordpour also received a three and half year prison sentence on similar charges.The brothers ran a Kurdish news agency together which mainly covers news from the Kurdish region.

Iranian Christian Mostafa Bordbar was released from prison on November 3, following a successful appeal against the 10-year prison sentence he received on July 31 2013. Bordbar was arrested in late 2012, along with 50 other Christian who had gathered to celebrate Christmas.

ARBITRARY ARRESTS

On November 11, Reza Heidarpour, a medical doctor from Evin Prison who examined and reported the injuries of Sattar Beheshti, was arrested in Tehran. The reason for Heidarpour’s arrest remains unclear.

LGBT RIGHTS

The Iran Human Rights Documentation Center released a new report on LGBT rights in Iran. The report claims that violations against LGBT persons are coming from both the government and society.

STUDENT RIGHTS

This week, four students at Amirkabir University were suspended from their studies for their activities at the university. Amirhossein Ali Bakhshi was suspended for semesters, and Saha Mortezaie, Rasoul Ahmadi and Kasra Goudarzi were each suspended for one semester.

PRISONERS RIGHTS

On November 10, four political prisoners of the Evin prison, Abdolfattah Soltani, Saeed Madani, Amirkhosro Dalirsani and Mehdi Khodaie, ended their hunger strike after receiving requests from civil rights activists, their families and human rights lawyers. The political prisoners published an open letter explaining the reasons for why they began their hunger strike.

This week, the father of Hossein Ronaghi Maleki expressed his deep concern regarding the health conditions of his son in a note published on the Kalameh news website. Ronaghi Maleki, a prisoner at Evin Prison suffers from various health problems but prison authorities continue to deny him medical treatment. According to his father, some of his health issues are life threatening.

This week, Mostafa Tajzadeh, a political prisoner at Evin prison, originally granted permission to visit a doctor outside of the prison, actually found himself in court in Tehran. The unexpected hearing was for the revolutionary court to issue new charges against him brought on by one of the revolutionary guards officer.

On November 13, Fatemeh Karroubi, the wife of the Green Movement leader Mehdi Karroubi who has been under house arrest for over 1000 days, released a video message expressing her concerns regarding her husband's health conditions. This week, many commemorated the 1000th day of the Green Movement leaders house arrest.

EXECUTIONS

HRANA news agency, reported on November 11, that two prisoners in the city of Gonbad-e-Kavus were executed . They were found guilty of drug trafficking.