Interview with “Nastaran Naeemi” , the wife of “Soheil Arabi”
HRANA News Agency – During this month, the death sentence for Soheil Arabi , a Facebook Activist has been approved by the Supreme court on the charges of insulting the Prophet and Imams and his case is sent to the Enforcement Office.
HRANA News Agency has performed an interview in this regards with the wife of this death row prisoner which can be seen in the following:
-Mrs Naeemi, although I know it might be difficult to repeat the words you have said before, please give us the latest information about Mr Arabi’s case if possible.
The case status is still the same and there is no new information. The only change is that despite of our appeal request, the appeal is not yet registered. We are hopeful that our request for the appeal gets noted and we get to prove that this case procedure has not been legitimate. We trust the judgement of the judicial system, meaning that we are hopeful to receive a fair prosecution for Soheil’s case to break this unfair verdict which will make us all happy.
-I hope the same. If it is possible, please tell us if Soheil was involved with any other activities other than the ones on Cyber Space.
Yes, Soheil had other activities and I do accept it . Sohel received a 3 years sentence from Judge “ Salavati” on the charges of insulting the Supreme Leader and propaganda against the regime and also because of his Facebook page where he used as a platform to express his ideas. Of course expressions were limited to social and daily topics such as child labour or inflation. He used to send posts about those issues and they can be seen from his Facebook page which is still working. However, our argument is that “insulting the prophet” charge is based on the contents from other pages which have several admins apart from Soheil. In addition, all of the contents were copied in his anger. Unfamiliarity with the consequences of his actions resulted to these activities which can consequently be considered for breaking this verdict. Moreover, as well as unfamiliarity, it is important to note that the contents were not made by him or the caricatures posted on the pages were not created by him and were copied from other sources. Is this a fair sentence for these charges? This is against the law.
-When was his first arrest?
Soheil was arrested on 6 January 2014.
-How long did the interrogations last?
Soheil was arrested by Sepah (IRGC) Intelligence Services and as far as I know spent 4 weeks at Ward 2A and another 4 weeks at Ward 209 in custody after which he was transferred to Ward 350 at Evin Prison.
-Can you provide us with some information about his arrest?
Soheil was arrested between 6:00 to 8:00 in the morning at home. They did not have his Arrest Warrant with them but they had a Search Warrant for the house and also a Confiscation Warrant for belongings. Computer, photo camera and video recorder, hard disk, USB sticks, etc were seized by them. They return these later but all the information were deleted from them.
-Was the arrest procedure normal and polite?
Their attitude was polite and professional. I have to repeat that they didn’t have Soheil’s Arrest Warrant. Also they mentioned that they are arresting Soheil for couple of short questions which was the main reason I kept quite so far. I was expecting him to return home every day. I am still wondering how did his case got to this point.
-Have you received any news about the appeal?
Now we didn’t receive any direct news about his appeal. However, his lawyers are working to convince the Judge and we are hopeful. We are hopeful that his appeal gets noted and until now they have agreed to send his case to branch 34. I hope that the appeal gets approved so I can bring good news for people.
-Naturally you would confirm that before receiving the final verdict you did not make any public awareness and did not contact anyone about Soheil’s situation?
Yes, because I always believed in the fairness of the procedure of Judicial system and I still have faith that this issue should be solved inside the country. I feel that the case become a political case which affected the prosecution process. But I am hopeful that the fair judges inside the country could attend to our request .
-So based on you request, we will not publish the news about the case internationally.
You have the permission to inform international Human Rights Organisation if you are interested but please ask them to keep their patience until we receive the response on the appeal request and don’t make any reaction. You are my trustee to create public awareness…
-Thanks very much for your time. I am sure that you will hear good news about Soheil.
I hope the same. Much obliged.