Female political prisoners subject to cruel treatment in Iran

Female political prisoners subject to cruel treatment in Iran

Published by on March 12, 2018

Two female human rights defenders are being subjected to brutal treatment in the Shahr-e Rey prison, in Varamin, just outside of Tehran. The pair are being held in unsanitary conditions on the quarantine ward on the prison, with only restricted access to the outside world. Atena Daemi and Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee are imprisoned for defending women’s rights and opposing the death penalty.

Golrokh Iraee, after being on hunger strike for 35 days, is in poor health and suffering from severe muscle cramps that make her unable to move.

Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Research and Advocacy Director for the Middle East and North Africa, in a statement published on 9 March, said : “We are extremely alarmed by reports from Shahr-e Rey prison about the targeting and escalating ill-treatment of Golrokh and Atena. They should never have been imprisoned in the first place, and now it seems the Iranian authorities are deliberately subjecting them to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment because of their outspoken activism and continued human rights work even behind bars.”

Atena Daemi is a human rights activist who distributed material opposing the death penalty and Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee wrote an unpublished fictional story about the cruelty of stoning which was only found during a search of her home. Both women are accused of acting against security of the ‘Islamic’ state ruling Iran.

In his statement Philip Luther said: “The sentences handed down to Atena and Golrokh beggar belief. The Iranian authorities must release them immediately and unconditionally. Instead of punishing those who dedicate their lives to the cause of human rights in Iran, the authorities should start working to ensure human rights defenders are able to operate in a safe environment, free from fear or reprisals.”

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Abolish death penalty

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Dear Secretary General of United Nations,

The number of executions is rising in Iran, journalists are being detained for doing their job and activists face cruel and degrading punishments, long prison terms and even execution. According to the most recent reports by Amnesty International and the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, “Iran’s judiciary continues to sentence child offenders to death, and carry out their execution by hanging”. Also, on August 9th, 2016 the son of late Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, Khomeini’s designated successor in 1988, published a shocking audio tape of his father’s meeting with the “Death Commission” which summarily and extra-judicially executed tens of thousands of political prisoners held in jails across Iran. The massacre was carried out on the basis of a fatwa by the regime’s then-Supreme Leader Khomeini.

We, the undersigned, hereby urge you to take up this issue and raise it in the General Assembly in order to;

1. Put pressure on Iran to immediately halt the executions and abolish death penalty in Iran.
2. Call on all Western governments to make any improvement in economic relations with Iran contingent on its human rights record.
3. Demand in its resolution on human rights violations in Iran, to bring the perpetrators of 1988 massacre (one of the worst atrocities the post-war world has ever seen – Geoffrey Robertson-QC) to justice before an international tribunal.

Executions must stop.

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