Identity of Leila Tajik’s co-Defendant Confirmed

Posted on: November 8th, 2018

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)- HRANA has identified Leila Tajik’s co-defendant and former spouse — sentenced to death on espionage charges, per a HRANA report dated October 11, 2018 — as Seyed Jamal Hajizavar, 47, a former staff member on the IRGC Aerospace Force.

In the same report, HRANA reported on Tajik’s sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment in exile for the same charges, ruled in Branch 4 of Tehran Military Court.

Pursuant to a joint case opened up against the two by the IRGC intelligence unit, the former couple was arrested September 5, 2017, and held in an IGRC outpost. Tajik was later transferred to the Evin Prison Women’s Ward on March 19, 2018.

Over the course of his 14-month detainment, reports of Hajizavar’s violent torture — including de-nailing and electric shock in so-called “death cells”– have been conspicuously absent from the state-run news media.

An informed source previously told HRANA, “their children, Sabah, 16, and Sahand, 19, are hurting over the breakup of their family, and are feeling additional pressures from IRGC agents.”

Prisoners in Iranian Baluchestan Brutally Tortured by IRGC Intelligence Unit

Posted on: September 7th, 2018

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) – At the hands of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corp’s Saravan Intelligence Unit, at least seven detainees have recently been subjected to torture.

HRANA has identified two of these victims as Najib Dehvari, 21, and Abdolshokur Sotoudeh, 22, both from Saravan. Saravan is a city in Iran’s southeastern Sistan & Baluchestan Province, home to the Baloch ethnic minority group.

Dehvari, Sotoudeh, and their comrades were initially arrested in connection to a sound bomb that went off in front of the Ministry of Intelligence Bureau in Saravan. There were no casualties. They were held in the IRGC Intelligence Detention Center before being transferred to Ward 1 of Zahedan Prison in the province’s capital city.

A source familiar with the case told HRANA that the seven were religious seminary students who confessed after enduring prolonged beatings and torture. The source added, “they were interrogated during the night, lashed with electrical cables shocked with electricity. The wounds are still visible on the soles of their feet, and they are unable to walk.”

The torture of prisoners by IRGC Intelligence Units and the Ministry of Intelligence is more widespread in Baluchestan than in other regions of Iran. In a technique commonly exerted by these centers, called the “miracle bed,” the prisoner is tied to a bed frame and repeatedly flogged with the goal of extracting a confession. Historically, prisoners often utter confessions to put an end to the torture, rather than authentically confess to a crime.

Massoud Ghanbarzehi, another prisoner was detained on charges of “Acting against national security through cooperation with opposition groups” back in June, was interrogated and tortured while being held for three weeks in a Zahedan Ministry of Intelligence detention center before being transferred to Zahedan Central Prison.

Three additional Intelligence Center detainees who previously reported on their torture–Mohammad Saber Malik-Raeisi, Abdulkarim Shah Bakhsh, and Noor Ahmad–shared accounts of the various torture methods they endured, among them the “miracle bed” technique.