Human Rights House of Iran – Blogger and journalist, Hossein Ronaghi Maleki was allowed a prison visit with his family, after his mother staged a hunger strike outside Tehran’s Evin Prison.
Ronaghi’s family, who had been informed of his critical physical condition during a phone call earlier, had asked Tehran’s Prosecutor in a meeting to authorize a face-to-face prison visit for their son. Their requests were turned down by the prosecutor.
One of Ronaghi’s relatives told a RAHANA reporter, “The prosecutor’s refusal to authorize the visit coincided with news of Ronaghi’s hunger strike, along with Tavakoli and Goudarzi, being widely published by the media. The family who was aware of Ronaghi’s kidney problems insisted on having a prison visit with their son.”
The relative went on to say, “After she heard the negative answer to the family’s visit request, Hossien’s mother decided to go on a hunger strike.”
Ronaghi’s mother vowed to continue her hunger strike outside Evin until she was allowed to visit her son. She was told by intelligence agents that she could continue for as long as she wanted, but she would not achieve anything by staging a hunger strike.
Eventually, after a few days of hunger strike when she saw that the authorities were not going to address her demands, Ms Ronaghi became more vocal and her protests became louder. In order to defuse the situation which was becoming increasingly tense, prison officials took Ms Ronaghi inside where she met with a judge who authorized a face-to-face visit for Ronaghi.
During the visit, Hossein asked his mother, who suffers from heart problems, to end her hunger strike. He was then taken back to solitary confinement. This was the 3rd time in 6 months that the blogger visited with his family. He is said to be in weak physical condition and has difficulty speaking.
Ronaghi’s investigation is going through its final stages and his interrogation will reportedly end this week.
Hossein Ronaghi Maleki was arrested in December 2009. On May 24, after he started a hunger strike, he was placed in solitary confinement, where he remains to this day.