Monthly Archives: April 2013

Ashura detainee Behzad Arabgol transferred to Evin prison

Committee of Human Rights Reporters –  Behzad Arabgol, war veteran, presidential campaign activist and Ashura detainee, was transferred to Evin prison today April 30th,  to serve his 4-year prison sentence.

According to CHRR, this Green movement activist and Iran-Iraq war veteran who still carries shrapnel in his body from the war, was arrested during the Ashura protests following the disputed presidential elections in 2009, and endured 6 months behind bars in Evin prison under difficult conditions and harsh interrogations.

This Green activist who has never used his veterinary benefits, was handed a 6-year prison sentence by Judge Salavati presiding over Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court: five years on the charge of “illegal gathering,” and one year on the charge of “mutiny.” The sentence was later commuted to a total of 4 years in prison by the court of appeals.

Following several intimidating visits by agents to his home, in March 2010 Behzad Arabgol presented himself at the Ministry of Intelligence in order to spare his family from further harassment. He was held in solitary confinement in Evin prison for extended periods of time and faced intense interrogations before being released on 100 million Tomans bail on July 7, 2010.

Behzad Arabgol is a father to a 4.5-year old and a 7-year old, and supported his family through his job as a construction worker.


Ashura detainee Behzad Arabgol transferred to Evin prison

انتقال بهزاد عرب‌گل، از متهمین عاشورای ۸۸ به زندان اوین

Behzad Arabgol

Activists Adel Seymari and Majid Bavi arrested in Khuzestan

Committee of Human Rights Reporters –  Following the wave of arrests of minority Arab civilians in Khuzestan province, on Sunday, April 28th Adel Seymari and Majid Bavi were detained in the city of Ahvaz.

According to news sources, plainclothes officials equipped with wireless gadgets and weapons, entered the workplace of Adel Seymari and embarked on an aggressive search, prompting Mr. Seymari and a co-worker to object to their behavior. In response the officials beat them up and detained Adel Seymari.

The reports indicate that at the same time, a number of officials raided the home of Adel Seymari, conducted a massive search and confiscated personal items including his computer, camera, and family photo albums. The officials lashed insults at Adel Seymari’s family members during the raid and threatened them with serious consequences if they divulged what had occurred.

The report adds that also on Sunday April 28th, Majid Bavi, another Khuzestan Arab activist was arrested in the city of Ahvaz and taken to an undisclosed location. There is no reason provided for the arrests while the condition and whereabouts of the two men is unknown.

The two Arab activists were among the protestors against the death sentence and imminent threat of execution of five Ahwazi Arab citizens by the names of Mohammad Ali Amouri, Sayed Jaber Alboshoka, Sayed Mokhtar Alboshoka, Hashem Sha’bani Amouri, and Hadi Rashidi.

In the past months a large number of Ahwazi Arab activists have been summoned and arrested in various cities of Khuzestan province, receiving heavy prison sentences in exile and the death penalty. In June, officials transferred four Ahwazi Arab prisoners from Karoun prison to an unknown location and notified their families that they had been executed.

Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran, in his recent report drew attention to the plight of Ahwazi Arab citizens, stating that the five facing execution were tortured and not given a fair trial.


Activists Adel Seymari and Majid Bavi arrested in Khuzestan

بازداشت عادل سیمری و مجید باوی از فعالان مدنی عرب خوزستان

Iran prisoner

Behnam Ebrahimzadeh’s son hospitalized again

Committee of Human Rights Reporters –   Nima Ebrahimzadeh, son of labor activist Behnam Ebrahimzadeh, was hospitalized again on Saturday April 27th at Mahak Hospital in order to undergo another round of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

CHRR reports that Nima Ebrahimzadeh, son of incarcerated labor activist Behnam Ebrahimzadeh who is on temporary release due to his son’s condition, was diagnosed with cancer three months ago. Nima’s condition worsened as he refused to eat or drink due to the stress of his father’s imprisonment. He is now hospitalized again in the pediatric cancer facility in order to give more blood tests and undergo another round of chemotherapy and radiation treatment for his cancer.

While the extension of furlough was first denied for Behnam Ebrahimzadeh who was ordered to present himself at Evin prison on April 20th, his cancer stricken son Nima was hospitalized, stricken with thrombocytopenia (low blood platelet count). When Nima’s medical documents were presented to the prosecutor’s office, the labor activist was given a few days extension in order to be by his son’s side at the hospital.

Behnam Ebrahimzadeh, member of Committee to Pursue Establishment of Labor Unions and Association to Defend Child Laborers, was arrested by agents of the Intelligence Ministry on June 12, 2010. Branch 15 of the Tehran Revolutionary Court handed down a 20-year prison sentence, which was later commuted by the appellate court to 5 years in prison.

CHRR   Behnam Ebrahimzadeh’s son hospitalized again

Nima Ebrahimzadeh

Members of the Association to Defend Child Laborers visit with Behnam and Nima Ebrahimzadeh

Committee of Human Rights Reporters – On April 22nd, a number of child laborers along with members of the Association to Defend Child Laborers visited labor activist Behnam Ebrahimzadeh and his hospitalized son Nima at Mahak Hospital in Tehran.

According to CHRR, members of the association and a number of child laborers from the Nemat Abad area went to the hospital for a visit and shared their stories with Nima, the hospitalized cancer stricken son of the labor activist, Behnam Ebrahimzadeh.

During the visit, which lasted about an hour, the children made introductions to Nima and shared their stories; what line of work they did, how old they were when they had to start working, and gave a description of their daily life routines.

One child by the name of Jabar described his difficult working conditions and explained how he had managed to obtain his diploma while working with the help of activists from the Association to Defend Child Laborers. Another child named Kabir shared that he continues his studies even though he works as a vendor in the streets and in the subway stations. Nima Ebrahimzadeh told his peers about his illness and shared how the stress of his father being jailed had made him sick. He continued that he would fight his disease and like them, he intended to continue his studies despite his obstacles.

In January 2013 Behnam Ebrahimzadeh wrote a letter from prison insisting on being granted temporary leave to see his cancer stricken child. A group of political prisoners from Rajai Shahr prison also released a statement calling for the release of the father in order to be by the side of his ailing son.

On April 20th while the extension of furlough was denied for incarcerated blogger, labor and child activist Behnam Ebrahimzadeh, his cancer stricken son Nima was hospitalized.

According to CHRR, with the denial of an extension for his father’s furlough, the stressed young Nima Ebrahimzadeh was stricken with thrombocytopenia (low blood platelet count) and was hospitalized in Mahak Hospital in Tehran. The children’s rights advocate had been granted furlough on 200 million tomans bail, but he was ordered by judiciary officials to return to prison despite his son’s illness.

Behnam Ebrahimzadeh, member of Committee to Pursue Establishment of Labor Unions and Association to Defend Child Laborers, was arrested by agents of the Intelligence Ministry on June 12, 2010. Branch 15 of the Tehran Revolutionary Court handed down a 20-year prison sentence, which was later commuted by the appellate court to 5 years in prison.


Members of the Association to Defend Child Laborers visit with Behnam and Nima Ebrahimzadeh


Raheleh Zokayi, exiled prisoner at Gharchak prison launches hunger strike

Committee of Human Rights Reporters – Raheleh Zokayi, a female prisoner exiled to Gharchak and Ramin prison launched a hunger strike on April 23rd, demanding to be transferred back to Evin prison.

According to CHRR, when this female prisoner realized that she has been banned from visitation in the new facility, she launched a hunger strike in protest and demanded to be transferred back to Evin.

On December 26, 2012, Raheleh Zokayi was transferred from Evin to Gharchak and Ramin prison. At that time upon her return from furlough, inspection officers at Evin prison engaged in a confrontation with Zakayi, and fabricated a report to their superiors resulting in her transfer order.

Raheleh Zokayi was among a group of female detainees at Evin prison who launched a hunger strike that began on October 31, 2012 in protest of their maltreatment at the facility. She became known as the unknown prisoner when hers was the only frame without a picture on posters that circulated of the hunger striking female prisoners.

Zokayi was arrested in 2002 when she was 19 years old on the charge of armed robbery and sentenced to four years in prison. She was later handed an additional 10 years when she took responsibility for possessing some of the drugs found in her cellmate’s belongings.

The blog “Women Behind Prison Bars” wrote the following about this female prisoner: “She discussed the reason for her first arrest with incarcerated reporter [and member of One Million Signatures Campaign to End Discriminatory Laws], Maryam Hosseinkhah, who was held in the public women’s ward at Evin with Raheleh Zokayi. She said that since the age of 11, her uncles used her as a pawn to cover their theft and her family members had forced her into accompanying them during attempted armed robberies in order to throw off suspicion. Raheleh Zokayi said she received an additional 10-year prison sentence for possession of illegal substances because she covered for one of her cellmates by holding some of her drugs in order to spare her cellmate from the death penalty.”

On November 12, 2012, the blog reported that Raheleh Zokayi’s parents are also in prison. She was married off at the age of 13 and a few years later her husband who was a member of a drug smuggling gang from the eastern region of the country was killed by gunfire during a shoot-out, leaving her with a son. After the death of her husband, Raheleh returned to her father’s home and once again was forced to accompany her uncles during robberies. The blog also reported that Zokayi has not been able to have contact with her lawyer during this time.

In 2009 Zokayi was first handed the death penalty, which was later commuted to an additional year in prison stemming from her helping political prisoners in Evin prison with obtaining phone calls.

Raheleh Zokayi’s 12-year old son who lives with her sister was only a year old when his mother was incarcerated in 2002, and he lacks the birth certificate required to register for school.


Raheleh Zokayi, exiled prisoner at Gharchak prison launches hunger strike


Incarcerated activist Peyman Chalaki released on bail

Committee of Human Rights Reporters – On April 21st, Peyman Chalaki, former head of the Islamic Student Association of Saveh University, a Green movement activist and administrator of the Mousavi presidential election campaign, was released on bail of 400 million tomans.

According to CHRR, even though Peyman Chalaki had posted bail and was set to be released before the Nowruz holiday in March, he was kept behind bars and was finally granted furlough on Sunday April 21st. Chalaki was arrested on January 10, 2010 in the aftermath of the Ashura 88 protests, along with his wife and young child.

Peyman Chalaki, his wife Simeh Alamipasand and their 3-year old daughter Mana were arrested at their home by agents from the Sari Ministry of Intelligence. Chalaki was handed a 4-year prison sentence by the Revolutionary Court and the ruling was confirmed at the court of appeals.

CHRR  Incarcerated activist Peyman Chalaki released on bail

Peyman Chalaki

Pouria Farazmand, blogger from Kermanshah, arrested

Committee of Human Rights Reporters –  According to received reports, student, blogger and cyber activist Pouria Farazmand was detained in Kermanshah on April 7th.

According to CHRR, last Sunday when the student from Kermanshah province went to his university to follow up on matters regarding his graduation, he was handed a summons by the university security. As Farazmand was exiting the university, plain clothed officials who were equipped with walkie-talkies and pistols accosted and detained the student.

Students who witnessed the clash reported that the officials engaged in a brutal confrontation with Pouria Farazmand, beating him up and insulting him as they detained him.

After Pouria Farazmand was violently taken away, one of the security officials, M. Seyedi, appeared in front of the university’s gate and hurled insults while threatening the group of students who had converged at the scene. He lashed denigrating remarks and called the detained student and blogger a “spy” who is associated with “foreign entities.”

Pouria Farazmand is the writer for the blog Azadi Baraye Hamegan (freedom for all) and served on the editorial board of Mosht (fist), a banned student newspaper. Witness students said Farazmand never wrote anything pointing to foreign associations and that he only wrote about internal politics in Iran.

There is still no news of the whereabouts or condition of the student blogger.

During the past months an increasing number of bloggers, Internet activists and citizens taking part in social networks critical of the ruling regime have been arrested in variousprovinces in the country including Tehran, Alborz, Fars, Kurdistan and Razavi Khorasan.

CHRR  Pouria Farazmand, blogger from Kermanshah, arrested


Pouria Farazmand