A Daily Overview of Human Rights Violations in Iran for January 30, 2019

Posted on: January 30th, 2019

The following is an overview of human rights violations in Iran on January 30th, 2019 based on the information compiled and verified by Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA).

(1) More than five protests were organized across the country on January 30, 2019. The workers of Ahvaz inter-city rail, taxi drivers in Bukan, the customers of SAIPA and IranKhodro companies, the environmental activists in Behbahan, and the employees of Railway Services and Technical Construction Engineering Company (RSTC), have held separate protests to request their demands.

(2) A 27-year old was tried in absentia and sentenced to three years in prison and 74 lashes for “stealing a chicken” in Laly city in Khuzestan province.

(3) A retired teacher, Alireza Kafaei, was arrested in Gachsaran on January 29, 2019. The leader of Islamic Association of Teachers of Gachsaran is suffering from diabetes and severe heart disease. He was released on bail earlier today.

(4) Three Kulbars (Kurdish back carrier) died or were injured in Salmas and Baneh. Saman Salehi and Mohammad Karimi were killed after the Iranian border patrol opened fire to a group of Kulbars. Another Kulbar, Sammy Rashidi, was injured in another accident.

(5) A prisoner was executed in Noor prison on the charge of murder. Two prisoners, Hashem Badrkhani and Houshang Hosseini who were accused of murder, were spared from hanging on gallows by consent of next of kin in Bandar Abbas.

(6) Jafar Azimzadeh was transferred to Evin prison to serve his six years prison sentence. Azimzadeh and Parvin Mohammadi, the members of the Free Union of workers in Iran, were arrested on January 29.

(7) Three poachers have been arrested in Ghomishloo National Park in the Najafabad county in Isfahan province.

(8) The court was in session for eight environmentalists in Tehran without their lawyers on the espionage-related charges. Moreover, five of the detained environmental activists were charged with “corruption on earth”.

(9) A Baloch citizen, Yousef Shahouzehi, was arrested for an unknown reason in Nik Shahr county in Sistan and Baluchestan. His whereabouts is still unknown.

(10) Keyvan Bazhan, a writer and member of the Iranian Writers Association, was released on bail. He was arrested along with two other writers, Baktash Abtin and Reza Khandan Mehrabadi on January 22 on the charge of “encouraging immorality or prostitution”.

(11) Five senior managers of North Khorasan University of Medical Science were flogged on financial-related charges in this university. The head of North Khorasan Justice department confirmed that and added that the court cases fillings have been increasing by 14 percent in the last ten months.

(12) Hassan Hassanzadeh and Hassan Peyghami were released from Urmia prison after completing their prison sentences. They were sentenced to two-year prison term in exile on the charge of “cooperation with the opposition groups” and “acting against national security”.

(13) The school’s roof collapsed due to rains in Pashbard village in Sardasht county in the West Azerbaijan province. Students temporarily use a “conex [shipping container] school “.

(14) The head of Hamadan Mental Health Department & Prevent announced the launch of a campaign to end violence against women such as preventing domestic violence.

(15) The workers of Sisakht municipality in the Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad Province have two months of unpaid wages. In addition, more than half a million construction workers are not covered by insurance in Iran.

(16) An authority of Farhangian University, Mansour Nikpanah, confirmed the teacher shortage of 14 thousand in Sistan and Baluchestan province.

(17) Six police officers appeal of death penalty conviction was accepted by the Supreme Court. They have been indicted on a murder charge in the killing of three young men.

A Daily Overview of Human Rights Violations in Iran for January 26, 2019

Posted on: January 26th, 2019

The following is an overview of human rights violations in Iran on January 26th, 2019 based on the information compiled and verified by Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA).

(1) Ali Varmarzyar, a seventh-grade student in Hamadan, was transferred to a hospital after being beaten by his teacher. The student’s left hand was injured in this incident.

(2) After being detained for almost two months, Maziyar Seyyednejad, a labor activist, has a bond set to be released on bail. He was arrested during Khuzestan workers’ protests on December 1st and was transferred to an unknown place.

(3) Hossein Rezaei, a teacher and the secretary of the teachers’ union in Bushehr, was arrested earlier today and transferred to an unknown place. He had been summoned twice to the intelligence office and was interrogated in the last week.

(4) Four elementary students were injured in a school vehicle roll over incident near Mashhad. Three girls and a boy were transferred to hospital.

(5) Three citizens, Farshid Feizollahi, Mehran Mohammadi, and Akam Ghaderi were arrested separately in Sanandaj and Bukan and their whereabouts are unknown. They are accused of ‘cooperation with a Kurdish opposition group’.

(6) More than 13 thousand people have lost their lives in traffic-related accidents in the past nine months. This marks a 0.7 percent increase compared to the last year. The majority of accidents have been reported in Fars, Isfahan, and Tehran provinces.

(7) An Arab citizen, 27-year-old Walid Zubaidi, was arrested on Thursday in Ramshir city. His whereabouts and the reason of his arrest are still unknown.

(8) The head of the Department of Environment in Kiasar city in Mazandaran province announced that two poachers were arrested and carcasses of two Caspian red deer were confiscated from them.

(9) Reza Khandan Mahabadi, a writer and member of the Iranian Writers Association, was released on bail. He was arrested along with two other writers, Keyvan Bazhan and Baktash Abtin on January 22. Their charge is “encouraging immorality or prostitution”.

(10) Five construction workers were injured in Chabahar city because of negligence in the oversight of safety conditions in the workplace. Chabahar is in Sistan and Baluchestan Province.

(11) More than 700 artists who had gathered at the Theater Forum’s venue in Tehran, signed a letter condemning the mass arrest of theater artists and directors by the judicial system. 

(12) The director of the Iranshahr University of Medical Sciences announced that a Ringworm outbreak has been observed among students in Shamsabad village in Iranshahr. He added that this disease is highly contiguous and is caused by unhygienic lifestyle.

(13) More than 800 people have signed a statement in which they expressed their concerns for Esmail Bakhshi and Sepideh Gholian conditions and requested their immediate release. They were rearrested after the broadcast of their confessions on the national television.

A Daily Overview of Human Rights Violations in Iran for January 22, 2019

Posted on: January 22nd, 2019

The following is an overview of human rights violations in Iran on January 22nd, 2019 based on the information compiled and verified by Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA).

(1) More than nine protests were organized across the country. Retired educators and other retired government employees, Ghoflkar Company workers in Alborz, the municipality workers in Lowshan, Marivan, Borujerd, and Andimeshk, the workers of Assaluyeh Pars Petrochemical Company, the shareholders of Caspian financial institution in Rasht, and the contractors of Tehran municipality have held separate protests to request their demands.

(2) Placed 1st in the Iranian University Master Studies Entrance Exam, Amir Reza Alipour Hashtali Amoli, was sentenced to six months in prison on the charge of “insulting the Supreme Leader”.

(3) In the last nine months, 56 workers died and 112 have been injured in the work-related incidents in East Azerbaijan province, which is a four percent increase over a year. Iran ranked 102 in the workplace safety among other countries.

(4) 72 people have been arrested in a “mix gender party” in Sari. The detainees were transferred to the court. They may be able to get out of jail by posting bail, otherwise they would be imprisoned.

(5) Mashallah Shamsolvaezin, a professor of journalism, was summoned to the Evin’s prosecutor’s office. He was an editor of several newspapers, including Kian, Toos, Jame’eh, Neshat, and Asr-e Azadegan.

(6) A Human rights lawyer, Mohammad Najafi, was sentenced to 19 years imprisonments. He is serving his three years sentence in prison and faced 74 lashes and 16 more years imprisonment for his new charge of “spreading lies and disturbing public opinion”.

(7) Behzad Shahsavar and Siamand Shahsavar, prisoners of the Intelligence detention center in Urmia, have been transferred to Naqadeh prison. They were accused of “corporation with a Kurdish opposition group”.

(8) 23-year-old, Amin Pishdad, was transferred to Vakil Abad prison in Mashhad. He had been arrested last year on blasphemy and espionage related charges and was sentenced to ten years in prison which was reduced in the appeals court to eight months.

(9) A Baha’i citizen, Soheil Haghdoost, was sentenced to four months imprisonment on the charge of “propaganda against the state” for announcing and following up regarding his business’s forced closure. Also, he has been sentenced to a year in prison in March 2018.

(10) Reza Khandan and Farhad Meysami have been sentenced to six years in prison each, and were banned for two years form traveling, membership in any social or political group, and internet activism.

(11) The workers of Assaluyeh Pars Petrochemical Company, who were protesting their layoffs, have been arrested.

(12) Five students in Kashan were transferred to a hospital for gas poisoning because of negligence in the oversight of safety conditions in heater installation in the school.

(13) Three thousand villages in Sistan and Baluchestan do not have water distribution network. 46 percent of population in this province have access to the water sources.

(14) Members of the Iranian Writers Association, Baktash Abtin, Reza Khandan Mahabadi, and Keyvan Bazhan have been arrested. They were summoned to the court on the “encouraging immorality or prostitution” and security-related charges, were imprisoned because they could not post a bail.

(15) 180 workers of Ahvaz inter-city rail have 18 months of unpaid wages. Kayson Project Management Company paid one months of their unpaid wages but there are still concerns that the remaining will be left unpaid.

(16) A prisoner accused of murdering his friend was spared from hanging on gallows by consent of next of kin in Tehran. He was spending 6 years in prison.

(17) Mohammad Hosseinzadeh, civil rights activist, was released on bail. He was arrested with Arsham Rezaei and Majid Hosseini on the charges of “insulting the Supreme Leader” and “collusion against the state”. The two others’ whereabouts is still unknown.

Three Writers Slapped With New Charges

Posted on: November 5th, 2018

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)- Reza Khandan (Mahabadi) and Keyvan Bazhan, two members of the Iranian PEN Centre, and Bektash Abtin, one of the Centre’s inspectors, are facing new criminal charges which have doubled their bail amount.

Previously held on charges of “propaganda against the regime” with a bail set at 50 million tomans [approximately $3,300 USD], the three were recently summoned to Branch 7 of the Evin Prosecutions Office to be read new charges of “assembly and collusion with intent to act against national security” and “inciting Iranian women to depravity.” An informed source told HRANA that the case investigator has increased their bail amount to 100 million tomans [approximately $6,600 USD].

Of the new charge, Mahabadi said, “From what we’ve gathered from the case investigator, it seems certain officials deemed ‘propaganda against the regime’ to be too light a charge for us, and asked the investigator to recall the case and add more charges.” He added that he and his comrades denied the accusations and demanded proof.

All three defendants were read their charges of “propaganda against the regime” back in August. HRANA reported August 2, 2018, on the court summons of Bektash Abtin — poet, filmmaker, and former PEN member — to Branch 7 of the Evin Prosecution Office. Khandan and Bazhan received their respective writs on July 26th, giving them three days’ notice to appear in the same spot.

Reza Khandan (Mahabadi) (left) and Keyvan Bazhan (right), two members of the Iranian PEN Centre, and Bektash Abtin (middle).

In June 2018 and in a separate case, Karaj Revolutionary Court Branch 2 convicted Abtin of propaganda against the regime, sentencing him to three months’ forced labor at the State Welfare Organization of Iran and a fine of 5 million tomans [approximately $700 USD]. An appeals court later lifted the forced labor sentence.

Ministry of Intelligence Agents also detained Abtin was for three consecutive days in 2015, interrogating him about his film-making, membership in the CIW, and participation in the 2009 post-election protests.

The Iranian PEN Centre is a non-governmental organization founded in 1968 with the aim of uniting writers, translators, and editors against censorship. It is a subsidiary of PEN International. Since its foundation, and particularly during the 80s and 90s, Iranian authorities have hounded its members with repression, judicial prosecution, and targeted killings. Members Mohammad Jafar Pouyandeh and Mohammad Mokhtari were among those killed by the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence in the “chain murders” in the late 80s and early 90s.