In continuation of its monthly reports, the Centre for the Defenders of Human Rights has reviewed the situation of human rights in Iran during the month of Farvardin 1395 [Iranian month corresponding to 20 March to 19 April 2016].
The Centre for the Defenders of Human Rights, which is presided over by Shirin Ebadi has referred to the treatment with political prisoners and the prisoners of conscience and asked the authorities of the Judiciary to provide immediate access to adequate medical care for political and ideological prisoners, and respect Article No.502 of the Criminal Procedure Code regarding the provisions for postponing, or converting, the penal verdicts against infirm prisoners.
Therefore, this people-instituted organization has explained in its report that when it came to the issue of providing medical treatment for sick political and ideological prisoners, the relevant Judiciary officials adopted a selective approach to the implementation of the Criminal Procedure Code and the Executive Directives of the State Organization for Prisons, Security and Penitentiary Affairs. It declared: ”Any delay in the treatment of political prisoners has serious consequences for the judicial system, in a way that the Judiciary can be indicted on charges of involuntary manslaughter in case of the tragedy of death for ill prisoners.”
Furthermore, in its report, which is published in both Farsi and English languages, this people-instituted organization has reviewed the situation of human rights in Iran under the three main headings of: “Civil and political rights”, “social and economic rights”, and “cultural heritage and the environment”.
According to the website of the Centre for the Defenders of Human Rights, the text of the report by the said center for the month of Farvardin 1395, which has been published on 4th of Ordibehesht 1395 [23 April 2016], is as follows:
A Brief Report on Human Rights Situation in Iran in March-April 2016
The treatment of political prisoners and the prisoners of conscience shows that the in terms of the implementation of the Criminal Procedure Code and the Executive Directives of the State Organization for Prisons, Security and Penitentiary Affairs, the Judiciary officials have adapted a selective approach based on their preferences. This is why these prisoners have been denied proper medical care.
According to reports, one of these political and ideological prisoners is Omid Kokabi, who is suffering from kidney cancer and is currently in a hospital in Tehran.
The lawyer of Mr Kokabi has said to one of the state-controlled news agencies that his client has been struggling with the treatment of kidney stones and internal bleeding several times during the five years and three months that he has spent in the prison. What Mr Kokabi’s lawyer said clearly shows that the officials in the State Prisons Organization have not fulfilled their duties and responsibilities towards this prisoner properly.
According to another report, Alireza Rajaei – who has been released from the prison recently – is suffering from maxillofacial cancer. He became sick when he was in jail and the officials of the Evin Prison have taken any appropriate action to send him to specialist hospitals for treatment.
Zeynab Jalalian is another prisoner who needs to be sent to specialist treatment centers for treatment of her eyes. Hossein Ronaqi Maleki also needs specialist medical treatment.
This is while the refusal to send prisoners to hospitals and specialized medical centers sometimes has even led to the death of some sick prisoners; an example in that connection is Mohsen Dogmehchi.
Last year, in a report on the health status of political and ideological prisoners, the Centre for the Defenders of Human Rights asked the Judiciary – as the main body responsible for the prisons – to take the necessary action for improving the conditions of prisons, accelerating the treatment of sick prisoners, and also creating calm and peaceful conditions for their treatment. Unfortunately, however, this request was neglected and today the problem of infirm political prisoner has become more acute.
Therefore, any delay in the treatment of political prisoners has serious consequences for the judicial system, in a way that the Judiciary can be charged with “involuntary manslaughter” in case of the death of ill prisoners. In addition, to make matters worse, sick prisoners are responsible for meeting the costs of “hospitalization and treatment” as well as the expenses incurred as a result of placing “guards in hospitals to watch over the prisoners. These costs had to be met for example by Isa Saharkhiz. This is while such a request is eve against the Executive Directives of the State Organization for Prisons, Security and Penitentiary Affairs.
The report for this month also provides a summary of the human rights situation in Iran during the month of Farvardin 1395, as follows. This report is based on information published by various media channels and websites, whose accuracy has been verified. The report is appearing under three separate sections, and in Farsi and English languages.
Human Rights Situation in Iran in March-April 2016
Section 1: Civil, Cultural and Political Rights
A) Situation of Nonconformist Political and Social Activists
1. During this month, more than 30 people were detained and the names of them have been specified, as follows: Amir Valizadeh – a cyber-activist; Afshin Hosseinpanahi – a civil activist; and Sabri Hassanpur – a media activist - .
The Police officials have reported the detention of one individual in Khorasan Province – without mentioning his name – due to “promoting secular ideas”. In addition, ILNA News Agency has reported the detention of 15 workers of “Meyduk” Copper Complex, and some of state-controlled media have also reported the detention of Hedieh Tehrani – an actress – and some environmental activists for several hours.
On the other hand, some news sources have reported the detention of Ebrahim Rashidi – a cultural activist – Ali Dabat, Ali Kabi, Milad Dabat, Feisal Dabat and Mostafa Dabat – five citizens from Shush City – Sajjad Heidari, Sajjad Helali and Abdollah Hazbavi – three citizens from Ahvaz City – and Momen Barkazehi and Azimi Qadim – two religious activists.
Moreover, Hossein Daneshmand and Hassan Daneshmand – two citizens from Baneh City ; Mohammad Saeid Naderi – a former university student who left half-way through his course; Arash Mokri – a university student – and Ayub Saburi – a citizen from Chabahar City – during the last days of the month of Esfand 1394 (March).
It should be noted that some of the detainees were released temporarily on bail after a few days until the date of their trial.
2. Nahid Gorji – a civil activist – was sent to prison to spent three years in jail, Saeid Sadeqifar and Mohsen Mohsenzadeh – two civil activists – were sent to prison to spend three months and one day in the prison, Meysam Jolani, Morteza Parvin, Mostafa Parvin, Tohid Amir Amini and Saleh Pichqanlu – five civil activists – were transferred to prison to spend three months in jail. In addition, the sentences of 30 lashes each were carried out agains: Tohid Amir Amini, Morteza Parvin, Meysam Jolani, Saleh Pichganlu, Mostafa Parvin and Mohsen Mohsenzadeh.
3. Nazak Afshar – a cultural activist - is still being held in prison despite the fact that bail had been posted for her.
4. Esmaeil Gerami Moqadam – a member of the National Trust Party (Hezb-e Etemad-e Melli) – was sentenced to one year in jail in the Appeal Court. Moreover, Taher Qaderzadeh – a cultural activist – was sentenced to 91 days imprisonment term and Mohammad Shojaei – who is currently serving in jail – was sentenced to five years in prison, together with a five year suspended sentence, and a five year ban from leaving the country.
5. The court trial sessions of Ebrahim Madadi – a labour activist; Afarin Chitsaz – a journalist who is currently serving in prison; and Alireza Golipur – who is currently in jail – were held. Also, the appeal court of Soheil Babadi – a cyber-activist who is currently serving in prison – was held.
6. Abbas Lesani – a civil activist who is currently serving a jail sentence – was interrogated once more in the magistrate court due to a new charge. In addition, the spokesperson of the Judiciary has reported the summons of Shahindokht Molaverdi – the vice president – to the magistrate court.
B) Situation Regarding Cultural Rights
1. The Press Court has issued a warning to “Rah-e Mardom” Newspaper.
2. Relevant officials prevented the performance of a play called “Leili is the name of all of the girls in Iran”.
3. Some individuals prevented the lecture of Mohammad Baqer Nobakht – the vice president – without any intervention from the authorities. In addition, the lecture of Mostafa Moein was also cancelled in Ahvaz University due to the order of a Judiciary official.
4. Majid Derakhshani – a musician – is still banned from working despite the completion of his legal case.
C) Other Instances of Human Rights Abuse
Some 10 individuals were executed in this month. The complete names of some of them are still not clear but judicial authorities or government-controlled media have confirmed their executions. Some of the names are as follows:
“D-A”, “H-F”, “R-K” and “F-V” were executed in Rasht. Judiciary official have reported that their crime was the possession and transportation of drugs.
In addition, some unofficial news web sites have reported the execution of some individuals in Rajaei Shahr Prison, Oromieh, Birjand and Kashmar. These reports have not been confirmed or rejected by the Judiciary officials or the state-controlled media.
2. State-controlled media have reported the issuance of a death sentence against one individual in Tehran due to the crime of rape, one individual because of murder and another, called “Saeed”, for the crime of first degree murder. The Judiciary official has reported the issuance of a death sentence against four individuals in Ashkhane City due to the crime of Moharebeh [Declaring War against God - usually a reference to the armed opposition]. Also the police officials have reported the issuance of a death sentence against two individuals due to the crime of murder and unofficial news web sites have reported the issuance of a death sentence for three individuals in Ahvaz because of the crime of Moharebeh and one individual in Sanandaj because of murder.
3. State-controlled media have reported the issuance of lashes sentence against two individuals due to robbery and harassment and a Judiciary official has reported the issuance of lashes sentence against one individual because of cruelty against animals.
4. The health situation of some political prisoners is still reported to be unfavourable to the extent that some of them - such as Mohammad Ehsan Mazandarani and Iraj Mohammadi – are sick but no serious action has been taken for their treatment.
Section 2: Social and Economic Rights
Reports concerning the situation regarding social and economic also point to the continued presence of unfavourable conditions in these areas; for example: news reports indicate the presence of poor working and pay conditions for a number of workers in several factories and companies, including for instance: “Sadid Rikhtehgar”, “Tabriz Kaf” Factory, Sangparvardeh Tabas Coal Mine, South Pabdana Mine, “Zagros Steel”, Cheshmeh Puneh Mine, “Malch Aram” Coal Mine, Eastern Alborz Coal Mine, Ahvaz Abfa, “Sepehr Atlas Negin” Factory, a company manufacturing weed-killers, and the projects to complete phases No. 19,20,21 of the Asaluyeh [gas field], and the “Arta Cement” factory.
1. At the time of writing this report, the wages of 200 workers in Sardasht Fire Station have not been paid for four months; around 260 workers of Omidieh Municipality have not received their wages; around 120 workers of Sisakht Municipality have not been paid for five months; contract workers of Borujerd Municipality have not received their payments for two months; more than a thousand of workers in Persian Gulf Star Refinery have been paid their salaries for two months; bus drivers of Saman Seir in Mashad have not been paid for one months; 240 workers of “Iran Sadra Ship Making” Factory have not been paid for four months and more than 40 leased drivers of Labour Office in Khuzestan have not been paid for one month.
2. Some 200 workers of Arj household appliances production line have been fired due to the closure of production line; 380 workers were made unemployed due to the closure of the production line of Irana Tile Making Factory; 1200 workers were made jobless because of the closure of three Textiles units in Mashhad; and around 60 workers lost their jobs due to the closure of “Setabr Granule” Factory. In addition, 30 workers of “Orf Iran” Factory, 50 workers of “Zagros” Refrigerator Industry, two workers of “Kar Glass”, around 500 workers of “Borujerd Textile”, 100 workers of “Golchin Tile” Factory, 150 workers of “Isatis” Factory, around 30 workers of “Mojab” Publication, 150 workers of “Madan Ju” Coal Mine, and 52 workers of “Lushan Steel” were fired. In addition, three workers of Asaluyeh Special Zone were sacked from their jobs.
3. Police closed “Toranjestan Sorush” Shop due to trading books with the image of hearts printed on their covers.
Section 3: Cultural Heritage and Environment
Reports concerning the situation regarding cultural heritage and environment also point to the continued presence of unfavourable conditions in these areas during this month to the extent that, an authority has reported the reduction of forests in Iran from 16 hectares to seven hectares.
1. The density of dust particles in Ahvaz’s air has risen to nine times more than the permitted standards during some days of the month of Farvardin.
2. One individual was killed due to mine explosion in Bostan. In addition, a person referred to as “M-R” lost a foot due to landmine explosion in Marivan, while another individual was wounded for the same reason in Mahabad. On the other hand, “Rashaman Hamidi” in Ilam and another person in Qasreh Shirin suffered from post explosion trauma after mines blew off near them.
At the end of the report for the month of Farvardin of 1395, the Centre for the Defenders of Human Rights asks the authorities in the Judiciary to provide immediate access to appropriate and adequate medical care for political and ideological prisoners, and to respect Article 502 of the Criminal Procedure Code regarding the provisions for postponing, or converting, the penal verdicts against infirm prisoners.