Sen's daily

December 17, 2012

Rozita Vatheqi’s suffering continues


PCED, December 15

Rozita Vatheqi ( رزیتا واثقی ), a Bahai serving a 5-year sentence in Vakil Abad prison in Mashhad, is still being denied leave from prison, although she has served two years and nine months of her sentence. Prison officials have approved the leave, but the Ministry of Intelligence is preventing it being granted. By law, she should be eligible for parole after serving half her sentence, and leave from prison is normally granted earlier. Her old and ill mother, who has also been imprisoned, has been granted leave [or parole, the text is not clear ~Sen].

She was arrested at her home in Mashhad by the Ministry of Intelligence on March 14, 2010. After her arrest she was held for 12 days in quarantine before being transferred to the Ministry of Intelligence’s private jail, where she was held in solitary confinement for more than six months. She was interrogated for more than two months during this confinement. On April 25, 2010, she was transferred to solitary confinement in Mashhad’s central prison. During this period she only met her family once. On June 26, 2010, bail of 50 million tumans was set and paid by her family, but not only was she not freed, the authorities did not give her family any clear and adequate explanation. Her health deteriorated because of the poor conditions during this long period. Finally, on December 20, 2010, she was tried in the Revolutionary Court, along with 3 other Bahais, on charges of propagating the Bahai Faith and blasphemy. The trial was behind closed doors, and the judge did not permit a defence, or allow the accused to speak. She was sentenced to 5 years in prison, which was confirmed by the court of review, and she was then transferred to Vakil Abad prison near Mashhad to serve her sentence. The officials at this prison have made conditions for female prisoners of conscience especially harsh, by limiting their visitation rights and telephone calls, and the time allowed outdoors for exercise. They are not permitted to use the library. On June 29, 2011, Rozita Vatheqi was again tried, on a charge of teaching the Bahai Faith. Reports do not indicate what sentence was imposed.

Short link: http://wp.me/pNMoJ-1Aa

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.


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