Aliyeh Motallebzadeh’s request for release on probation was recently rejected in a written notification by the Tehran prosecutor’s office.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, the photographer and women’s rights activist is currently enduring a two-year sentence in Evin Prison in Tehran.
On November 26, 2016, Motallebzadeh was summoned to the office of the ministry of intelligence and subsequently was detained in Ward 209 of Evin Prison. On December 19, 2016, she was released on bail of 300 million tomans.
In 2017, the Revolutionary Court of Tehran sentenced Motallebzadeh to three years in prison on charges of “assembly and collusion to act against national security” and “propaganda against the regime”.
This verdict was upheld by Branch 36 of the court of Appeals in Tehran. In the issued lawsuit, “launching and participating in women empowerment workshop in abroad” had been invoked as an example of these charges. Grounded on Article 134 of the Islamic Penal Code, a severest punishment of two years was enforceable for her.
On October 11, 2020, Motallebzadeh arrived at Evin prison to begin her sentence, where she has been held since.
On April 26, 2021, she was punitively deprived of making phone calls after her complaints about the practice of holding detainees in solitary confinements in the prosecutor’s office of this prison.
On July 19, 2021, after contracting COVID, she was granted furlough and went on leave until August 30.
Aliyeh Motallebzadeh is a photographer, women rights activist and a member of the One Million Signatures Campaign for Gender Equality as well as a campaign to protect acid attack victims.
On Thursday, November 11, security forces arrested Tehran resident Omar Sharifi Bukani and then transferred him to an unidentified location.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Kurdpa, security forces arrested 70-year-old Sharifi Bukani without a warrant at his home in Tehran.
Mr. Sharifi Bukani was reportedly arrested once previously, in 1992, on a charge of “membership in one of the opposition political parties” and then sentenced to seven years in prison by the Revolutionary Court of Mahabad City. He was released in 1998 after serving out his sentence in Urmia Prison.
The reasons for yesterday’s arrest, along with Mr. Sharifi Bukani’s current whereabouts, are unknown as of this writing.
On Saturday, November 6, educator and union activist Aziz Ghasemzadeh was summoned by the Public and Revolutionary Court of Rudsar County.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, Aziz Ghasemzadeh received a summons via the online judicial system SENA to appear at the Branch 2 of the Revolutionary Court of Rudsar within eight days.
Following nationwide protests of educators all across the country, on September 26, security forces arrested Ghasemzadeh at his parents’ home in Rudsar City. During the arrest, security forces searched the house and confiscated several of Ghasemzadeh’s personal belongings.
The arrest took place the day after working and retired teachers held protests in 36 cities across the country, which were organized by the Coordination Council of Iranian Teachers’ Trade Associations. Throughout the detention, he was denied any access to a lawyer, phone calls and family visitations. Finally, on October 11, 2021, he was released on bail.
Ghasemzadeh will need to defend himself against charges of “propaganda against the regime” and “spreading lies”.
Writer, educator and civil activist Abbas Vahedian Shahroudi was recently sentenced to 10 years by Branch 4 of the Revolutionary Court in Mashhad.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, after spending 70 days in detention, Vahedian received the verdict, which was finalized after he refused to request an appeal.
In regard to a case which opened against Vahedian in 2019, the court issued this final verdict for the charge of “organizing in purpose to disturb national security” and in accordance with Article 498 of the Islamic Penal Code. During his 70 days in detention and throughout the introduction of the new case against him, Vahedian has been denied access to a lawyer.
Earlier, HRANA reported about his poor health condition in a solitary confinement cell in a Detention Center at the disposal of the Ministry of Intelligence.
On September 1 of this year, intelligence agents arrested Vahedian in Rezvanshahr County. Two days later, in a phone call to his family, he informed them about the opening of a new case against him on a charge of “acting against national security.” Meanwhile, Vahedian’s daughter’s home in Mashhad was searched by security forces and some personal belongings were confiscated.
Vahedian has previously been arrested and convicted for his writings and civil activities. In one case, he was arrested in Mashhad in October 2018 and later charged by Branch 903 of the Revolutionary Court of Mashhad with “acting against national security”, and “attempting to overthrow the regime”. He was released on a bail of 350 million tomans from Vakilabad Prison in Mashhad in December 2018.
Shortly after his interrogation, in August 2019, Vahedian was again arrested and transferred to Vakilabad Prison in Mashhad. He was one of the 14 signatories of a letter of request for the resignation of Ayatollah Khamenei, the supreme leader of Iran. Mr Vahedian was released on bail from Vakilabad Prison in Mashhad in July 2020.
A few days after HRANA’s report on the death of Khosro Jamalifar due to being beaten by prison officers in Sanandaj Prison, in response, the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) claimed in a report that Jamalifar fainted from a sudden headache and died in the hospital. Their statement stands at odds with reports from numerous informed sources.
To support the claim, the report published video footage of a moment when the inmate fell on the floor in his solitary confinement cell. This claim stands at odds with what informed sources reported to HRANA: that Khosro Jamalifar was beaten brutally by prison officers before being taken back to his cell, and died in prison rather than the hospital.
The IRIB also did not mention that following day, his body was buried secretly without waiting for the forensic report and delivering the body to his family. His family was also threatened into silence.
Some eyewitnesses who have seen the injuries on his head told HRANA that, contrary to IRIB’s claim, such wounds cannot be caused by a head collision with a bed frame.
On November 2, 26-year-old Khosro Jamalifar, who had previously been indicted on a murder charge and was awaiting the verdict, died from a strike to the head sustained during the beating.
According to an informed source, Jamalifar became involved in a quarrel with a fellow inmate in the quarantine section of Sanandaj. Thereafter, as an informed source told HRANA, “Prison officers began to beat him with batons which led to his death. In this incident, the failure of the prison nurse, named Abdollahi, to send (Jamalifar) to the healthcare center in a timely manner also played a role in his death.”
In the aftermath of Jamalifar’s killing, Sanandaj inmates are calling for authorities to take accountability and conduct a real investigation.
Iran’s prisons are notorious for their frequent incidents of brutality from authorities. Acts of violence such as this one are at serious odds with the basic responsibility of prisons to provide for the safety and health of their inmates. Institutions’ reluctance to conduct thorough investigations into acts of violence from their officials only perpetuates, and often even reinforces, a culture of abuse within Iran’s carceral system.
Branch 111 of the Criminal Court in Tabriz recently sentenced Vahid Abhari, a resident of Tabriz, to 3 months imprisonment and paying a fine.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, the court, headed by Judge Reza Forooghi sentenced Vahid Abhari to 3 months in prison, including the detention period, and a fine of 21 million tomans on a charge of “inciting violence via cyberspace”. Two months of this sentence has been suspended for two years.
Abhari, who has been arrested for his civil activities at least once before, was arrested on July 21 by security forces and held in the detention center of the intelligence ministry until August 11 when he was sent to Tabriz Prison. He was released on bail until the end of the legal proceedings.
On October 30, Abhari was summoned and notified of the charges.
Two workers’ rights activists were arrested by security forces on Saturday, November 6.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, on Saturday, Hirad Pirbodaghi and Asal Mohammadi were arrested yesterday after security forces searched their homes. Hirad Pirbodaghi made a phone call to his family earlier this morning and informed them that he is currently being held in the notorious Ward 209 of Evin Prison. Mohammadi’s situation and whereabouts are still unknown as of this writing.
An informed source told HRANA that security forced raided and searched their houses violently. Sunday morning, Hirad Pirbodaghi was notified about the charges against him, which include “assembly” and “collusion”.
Asal Mohammadi and Hirad Pirbodaghi have previously faced other arrests and convictions for their non-violent activism and worker’s rights advocacy.
Yesterday, before their arrest, Pirbodaghi and Mohammadi, along with seven other civil activists, filed a complaint in a judicial office against using solitary confinement as a tool of torture.
As of yet, the reason for these arrests is unknown.
Recently, Mashhad resident Mahmood Niroomand was sentenced to ten years in prison by the Revolutionary Court.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Kurdpa, he was charged with “acting against national security, propaganda against the regime on the internet and association with anti-regime groups”.
36-year-old Niroomand, who was notified of the verdict in recent days, is a native of Polgard village in Dargaz County in Razavi Khorasan Province.
On May 25 of this year, security forces arrested Niroomand without a warrant and transferred him to the detention center, at disposal of the Ministry of Intelligence, for interrogation. On June 24, he was relocated to Vakilabad Prison in Mashhad. He was denied access to lawyer and family visitation throughout the detention.
Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran recently sentenced writer and philosophy researcher Nima Ghasemi to four years and eight months imprisonment.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, Ghasemi, a resident of Tehran, was sentenced to 4 years in prison on a charge of “assembly and collusion against the regime” and eight months in prison on a charge of “propaganda against the regime “.
In the trial, Ghasemi’s notes and posts published on social media were invoked in support of these charges against him.
From this verdict, if upheld by the court of appeal, a severest punishment of four years is enforceable, grounded on Article 134 of the Islamic Penal Code.
On February 8 of this year, Nima Ghasemi was arrested by security forces at his home and transferred to the public section of Evin Prison. At the time of arrest, the security agents searched his house and confiscated several of his belongings including his written notes and laptop. On March 13, he was released on bail until the end of legal proceedings.
Nima Ghasemi is has a PhD in Philosophy from Shahid Beheshti University.
Recently, Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran sentenced political prisoner Kamran Rezaiefar to death. Rezaiefar’s trial began on December 28, 2020.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, political prisoner Kamran Rezaiefar has been sentenced to death on the charge of the so-called “spreading corruption on earth”. He was notified about his charges in September of this year.
In January 2020, Kamran Rezaiefar was arrested by the security forces on a charge of “association with The People’s Mujahedin Organization of Iran (MEK)”. He was released on bail after enduring 77 days in solitary confinement in wards 240 and 209 of Evin Prison.
In June 2020, he was arrested again this time for a charge of “spreading corruption on earth” and transferred to Evin Prison.