Imprisoned Sunni scholar prevented from calling family in past weeks

HRANA News Agency – Shaykh Mohammad Fathi Naghshbandi, a Sunni scholar imprisoned in Iran, has been forbidden from calling his family for the past two weeks.

According to the report of Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), Shaykh Naghshbandi, currently imprisoned in the Quarantine Section 12 of Zahedan Central prison, has been unable to speak to any of his family members for the past two weeks, after officials refused to give him permission to make telephone calls. The reason for the new restrictions are unknown.

The Sunni scholar, who was active in preaching Sunni teachings in the Shia-dominated Iran, was also the Friday prayer Imam of the city of Rask in the Sistan-Baluchistan province.

He was arrested along with several other Sunni activists in 2012 following the death of a pro-government cleric who was killed by unknown men in the Sistan-Baluchistan province.

Shaykh Naghshbandi and the Sunni activists, who have denied any involvement with the killing, were subjected to severe torture in detention. Interrogators also forced them to appear on camera and make false ‘confessions’.

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