Ali Ensandoost Arrested in Rasht

On August 13, 2022, security forces arrested Ali Ensandoost at his house and transferred him to an unidentified location.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, on August 13, 2022, former political prisoner Ali Ensandoost was arrested.

The reason for Ensandoost’s arrest, his whereabouts and the charges against him are unknown so far.

Ensandoost had faced arrest and conviction before. On April 28, 2020, security forces arrested him in Rasht for his activities on social media and an interview with opposition media outside the country. He was interrogated in a detention facility until September 2020 when he was transferred to Langerud Prison and held in a ward with prisoners of violent crimes.

The Revolutionary Court of Qom sentenced Ensandoost to eight years in prison on the charges of “collaboration with hostile countries, insulting the Supreme Leader, and propaganda against the regime”.After plea bargaining, the sentence was reduced to four years and six months. On December 26, 2021, Ensandoost was released to serve the rest of his sentence in home detention with an electronic monitoring device.

Political Prisoner Chia Agha-Beygpour Flogged in Bukan Prison

As a part of his punishment, political prisoner Chia Agha-Beygpour was flogged 70 times in Bukan Prison after his return from a short-term furlough.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Center of Democracy and Human Rights in Kurdistan, as a part of his punishment, political prisoner Chia Agha-Beygpour was flogged 70 times in Bukan Prison.

The flagellation was carried out soon after his return from furlough.

On July 29, 2021, security forces arrested and held him in a detention centre at the disposal of the Ministry of Intelligence in Bukan city. During the arrest, he had been deprived of contacting his family and having a lawyer. On September 6, he was released on bail until the end of legal proceedings.

In November of last year, the Revolutionary Court of Bukan sentenced him to one year and two months imprisonment, flogging and a fine for “propaganda against the regime in favour of one of the opposition political parties”.

On January 25, Chia Agha-Beygpour was jailed to begin to serve his sentence.

Soheila Hejab Beaten and Threatened Following Protest Against Poor Quality Prison Food

Since January 31, inmates of the women’s ward in the Correctional Center of Kermanshah have refused to get their meals in protest against the poor quality of the prison food. During the protest, the head of the prison guards beat political prisoner Soheila Hejab and threatened to open a new legal case against her and send her to an exile prison. Other protesting prisoners have been threatened with denial of visits and phone calls.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, an informed source stated that “on the first day, Soheila Hejab brought a piece of burned food to the head of the prison and asked her if he [could] eat it. He responded that they are running low on budget and therefore the food is what it is. When Soheila Hejab was returning to her ward, she saw the decorations for celebrating Fajr decade (an annual ten-day celebration for the triumph of the 1979 revolution). She protested why they do not use the costs of this celebration for improving food quality. Following a verbal quarrel, in response, the Head of Prison Guards Leila Hosseini-Nia beat her hard in the chest and hit her with a mirror.”

According to this source, prison officials have tried to accuse her of provoking a riot in prison. They have threatened to deny other prisoners visitations and phone calls unless they corroborated this and signed reports as witnesses.

Once before, in October 2021, Hejab was beaten in Qarchak Prison while on hunger strike.

Hejab was arrested by security forces on June 1, 2019, and then released from Evin Prison in Tehran on a bail of 3 billion tomans on March 14, 2020.

Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court sentenced her to 18 years in prison on charges of “propaganda against the regime”, “illegal assembly”, “incitement of public opinions to riot” and “organizing unlawful political groups”.

On May 23, 2020, the intelligence unit of the Revolutionary Guards arrested and transferred her to Gharchak Prison in Varamin City to serve her sentence. She was then transferred to Sanandaj Prison and then, on January 7, to the Correctional Center of Kermanshah City.

Political Prisoner Khaled Pirzadeh Sewed His Eyelids in Protest

Political prisoner Khaled Pirzadeh, who is exiled to Sheyban Prison, sewed his eyelids shut to protest refusal to release him on probation and furlough.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, judicial authorities did not keep their promise to grant him release on probation and furlough, prompting Pirzadeh to sew his eyelids in protest.

On August 23, 2021, Pirzadeh went on hunger strike to protest authorities’ refusal to release him on probation, the housing of political prisoners in the same ward as prisoners of violent crimes, and police officers’ brutal behavior towards family members during the delivery of an eviction order. Ultimately, he ended his hunger strike on November 14, 2021.

During the hunger strike, he developed extremely low blood pressure and blood sugar, backache and other physical problems.

On May 26, 2019, Pirzadeh was arrested violently by security forces and was sent to Evin Prison after interrogation. He was sentenced to 7 years in prison on the charges of “offensive statements against the supreme leader of Iran” and “assembly and collusion against the regime”. This sentence was confirmed in the Court of Appeals. According to Article 134 of the Islamic Penal Code, 5 years of this sentence for the charge of “collusion against the regime” is enforceable.

He was relocated to Greater Tehran Prison on July 22, 2020. Reportedly, at the time of transferring, he was beaten by prison guards. In August 2020, he had surgery on his foot. He needs additional treatment and surgery for his injured spine. On July 14, 2021, he was transferred from Greater Tehran Prison to exile in Sheyban Prison, Ahvaz and held him unlawfully in a ward that also houses prisoners of violent crimes.

Ahmad Tamouei Freed After Fifteen Years in Prison

Political prisoner Ahmad Tamouei was freed on December 16 after fifteen years in prison, ten months before serving his full sentence. He is currently on furlough and therefore, by court order, will not return to Urmia Prison.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, Tamouei was arrested by IRGC’s intelligence unit  on October 24, 2007. He was arrested by in Mahabad City while on a motorbike.

After spending time in a detention facility at the disposal of the IRGC, he was relocated to Mahabad Prison. On December 31, 2007, Branch 1 of the Revolutionary Court sentenced him to 15 years in prison, exiled in Urmia Prison on the charge of “enmity against the God through membership in Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK)”. The verdict was upheld on appeal. On September 8, 2008, he was transferred to Urmia Prison where he has been held until now.

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Political Prisoner Sasan Niknafs buried after Death in Greater Tehran Prison

The body of Sasan Niknafs, a political prisoner who died in Greater Tehran Prison on Monday, was buried.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, the Tehran Prisons Organization claims that the place of death was Firoozabadi Hospital in Tehran. However, an informed source stated that in reality, Niknafs’ body was taken to a hospital outside the prison after his death.

Sasan Niknafs was suffering from myriad mental and physical health problems, such as diabetes, fatty liver, gastritis, high blood pressure, and severe depression. By most definitions, Niknafs was unfit to serve time in prison, but his mother’s efforts to obtain a certificate of intolerance were unsuccessful until after his death. Moreover, despite the clear urgency of his condition, Prison officials significantly delayed sending Niknafs to a properly-equipped hospital outside the prison. He died on June 7.

 

Reports Indicate the Death of Sasan Niknafs in Prison; The Family is Worried and Waiting for Prison Officials to Respond

As of Monday, June 7, reports indicate that political prisoner Sasan Niknafs has died in the Greater Tehran Prison due to medical negligence.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, prison officials significantly delayed sending Mr. Niknafs to a properly-equipped hospital outside the prison, despite the clear urgency of his condition.

Niknafs has long suffered from diseases such as diabetes, fatty liver, gastritis, high blood pressure, and psychological problems.

The political prisoner was finally transferred to the prison’s health center two days ago where he reportedly died.

Branch 36 of the Tehran Court of Appeals sentenced Niknafs to eight years in prison on charges of conspiracy against the country’s security, propaganda against the regime, and insulting the founder of the Islamic Republic and the leadership. 5 years of imprisonment applied to him after applying article 134 of the Islamic Penal Code.

36-year-old Niknafs, father of two girls aged 8 and 9, endured eleven months of incarceration in poor physical and psychological condition. According to his lawyer, during a recent meeting, the effects of self-harm were visible on his hands.

Prison authorities have not officially announced the news of his death at the time of this writing despite repeated inquiries from his family and lawyer.

 

 

Narges Mohammadi Sentenced to 30 Additional Months in Prison, Flogging, and Fines

On May 19, less than a year after completing a five year sentence and being released from Zanjan Prison, human rights activist Narges Mohammadi was sentenced by Branch 1177 of the Criminal Court in the Quds Judicial Complex in Tehran to 30 more months in prison, 80 lashes, and two fines.

In March, HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, reported that Narges Mohammadi had published an open letter in response to her latest summons to the Evin Courthouse.

“I have not attended any hearing,” Mohammadi said in the letter. “I will not accept the verdict issued by the court and I definitely will disobey.”

According to HRANA, Mohammadi is facing a slew of protest-related charges, including “Propaganda activities against the Islamic Republic of Iran through the issuance of a statement against the death penalty”,  “Sit-down strike in the prison office”, “Breaking glass”, “Libel and assault”, and “Rebelling against the prison administration who asked to end the sit-down strike”.

In December 2019, Mohammadi and seven other political prisoners in the women’s ward of Evin Prison announced in a letter that they would go on a sit-down strike in support of bereaved families who lost loved ones in November 2019 national protests. Evin Prison officials threatened to deport Mohammadi and others who participated in the strike to prisons known for their harsher conditions. She was transferred from Evin Prison to Zanjan Prison in December 2019.

After five years and six months in prison, Narges Mohammadi was finally released from Zanjan in October 2020. Mohammadi has since been denied a passport and barred from leaving the country to visit her husband and children even though her previous conviction did not mention a supplementary ban on international travel.

Whether Mohammadi’s latest sentence is carried out given her refusal to accept the charges remains to be seen.

Farzin Rezaei Roshan Transferred to Aminabad Psychiatric Hospital

Exiled political prisoner Farzin Rezaei Roshan, who has been held in solitary confinement in Rajai Shahr Prison since May 10, was recently transferred to Aminabad Psychiatric Hospital.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, Roshan was sent to Rajai Shahr Prison on the pretext of being transferred to a hospital, and then held in one of its solitary confinement cells until his move to Aminabad.

Roshan was arrested by IRGC intelligence agents in June 2017 and held in Ward 2A of Evin Prison until he was released on bail 8 days later. Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran, presided over by Judge Mashallah Ahmadzadeh, sentenced Roshan to four years in prison on charges of “propaganda against the system and assembly and collusion against national security”.

Roshan was arrested and transferred to Evin Prison to endure his sentence in March, 2019. He had been imprisoned until his transfer to Aminabad Psychiatric Hospital, where he currently resides.

UN Experts Express Concern Over the Health Condition of Mohammad Nourizad in Evin Prison

On Tuesday, May 4th, UN experts issued a statement expressing concern over the health condition of civil activist Mohammad Nourizad and calling for his immediate release from Evin Prison. Javid Rehman, Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran, Niels Melzer, Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, and several other UN experts stated that Mr. Nourizad has been in critical condition for some time, and continued deprivation of treatment could prove fatal.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, UN experts have stated that Mr. Nourizad’s case is “emblematic of the situation many Iranian political activists face in detention” , citing the transfer of Mr. Nourizad to Loghman Hospital in Tehran, on April 14, 2021, after fainting. The statement reveals that once revived, Mr. Nourizad “found someone injecting him with an unknown substance, that he did not consent to or was informed of”. Nourizad was denied information about the substance or its purpose from officials, despite his explicit requests.

66-year-old Nourizad is an Iranian director, screenwriter, journalist, and activist. Nourizad became an outspoken critic of the Islamic Republic a decade ago, and has since been arrested and imprisoned several times for his civic work and visits to families of political prisoners.

In mid-August 2019, 14 activists, including Nourizad, signed a letter calling for the resignation of Ayatollah Khamenei. Several signatories were arrested, and others were pressured after the letter went public. Mr. Nourizad was arrested by security forces on August 11, 2019, along with several union and civil activists and sent to Vakilabad Prison in Mashhad (he was later transferred to Evin Prison, where he currently resides).

In the first part of his case, Mr. Nourizad was charged by Branch 4 of the Revolutionary Court of Mashhad, presided by Judge Mansouri, on charges such as “insulting the founder of the Islamic Republic, insulting sacred values, insulting the leadership, disturbing public opinion, cooperating with foreign media, and participating in illegal gatherings”, and was sentenced to 15 years in prison, 3 years of exile to Izeh, and a 3-year ban from leaving the country. Branch 35 of the Appeals Court in Razavi Khorasan Province revised the verdict to 15 years in prison, 2 years of exile to Izeh, and a 2-year ban on leaving the country.

In August 2020, in the second part of his case, he was sentenced by Branch 2 of the Mashhad Criminal Court to 8 months imprisonment, 74 lashes, and exile to Tabas on the charge of “disturbing public order” for appearing in front of the building where Kamal Jafari Yazdi was appearing; and sentenced to another 74 lashes on a charge of “spreading lies”. This verdict was confirmed by the Court of Appeal of Khorasan Razavi Province.

In May of this year, Mr. Nourizad announced that he has been sentenced to another year in prison on a charge of defending the rights of Baha’i citizens living in Ivanki, prompting this public concern. Mohammad Nourizad suffers from myriad underlying conditions, including asthma, heart problems, and high blood pressure. The forensic medicine organization previously ordered his release for medical reasons. According to these UN experts, considering Nourizad’s critical health condition and overwhelming consensus from professionals,  he cannot stay in prison.