The life of teacher union activist, Ismail Abdi, is in danger

The life of teacher union activist, Ismail Abdi, is in danger

Published by on May 28, 2017

Ismail Abdi, former secretary general of Iran’s Teachers Guild, is on hunger strike and his health is deteriorating rapidly, warned the Iran Teachers Organization in a statement issued on 24 May.

Mr Abdi, a mathematics teacher from Islamshahr in Tehran Province, was last arrested on 9 November 2016 after an appeal court confirmed an ealier prison sentence.

Amnesty International had reported in April 2016 that : “Ismail Abdi was arrested on 27 June 2015 and transferred to solitary confinement in Section 2A of Tehran’s Evin Prison, run by the Revolutionary Guards, and interrogated for at least 17 days without access to his family or lawyer. He may face a total of 16 years’ imprisonment if his new sentence is upheld. This is due to a previous suspended 10-year sentence that he received following a 2011 conviction on trumped up national security charges, related to his peaceful trade union activities.”

These charges against Ismail Abdi are all due to his peaceful activities; including cooperation with Education International, the largest World Federation of Teachers’ Unions, and organising peaceful protests. He has been on hunger strike since 30 April 2017.

According to the statement by Iran Teachers Organization his health is deteriorating rapidly and the officials must not neglect this matter.

Mr Abdi is suffering from low blood pressure and weight loss due to his hunger strike and yet no judiciary official has shown any reaction to his hunger strike.

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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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