Sen's daily

August 12, 2018

Pictures from a funeral

Editorial, August 12, 2018.

As previously reported, the ‘Golestan Javid’ (Bahai cemetery) in Kerman was closed by the judicial authorities on March 16 this year, preventing both visits to the graves and new burials. When an elderly Bahai man, Abbas Khalousi (عباس خلوصی), died on August 16, the authorities refused to allow him to be buried anywhere in Kerman, and held the body for four days before giving permission for him to be buried in a desert area near Rafsanjan, the capital of Kerman Province. The two cities are about 90 minutes apart. They summoned his son and told him to bury his father there, or they would take the body and bury him themselves.

The result was that, on the day of the funeral, a large motorcade of cars sped from Kerman to the place of burial, with other cars coming from Rafsanjan and other places, and a well-attended funeral was held. The authorities’ obduracy resulted in a highly visible event proclaiming the presence of the Bahais in the two cities, and making their oppression by the authorities visible to all. But it remains the case that the Bahais of Kerman are banned from visiting and caring for their cemetery, which will inevitably become overgrown before being seized by the authorities for profitable development by a regime insider.

The closure, destruction and vandalization of Bahai cemeteries has become common in Iran: many recent examples can be found on this blog by typing “cemetery” in the search box, or clicking on the category link “Burials and social matters.” For a discussion of the long history of symbolic violence directed at graves and bodies of Bahais and other in Iran, see Mehrdad Amanat, Set in Stone: Homeless Corpses and Desecrated Graves in Modern Iran (2012).

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Mehrdad Heyrani free after 3 months’ interrogation


Kalameh TV, August 11, 2018. –

Mehrdad Heyrani (مهرداد حیرانی), an elderly Bahai from Tehran, was released from Evin Prison today (Saturday) after three months’ interrogation. Bail is reported at 1.2 billion tumans, but should I think read 1.2 billion rials (the official currency unit), which is 25,000 euros or $US 29,000 at the current official rate. Mr. Heyrani was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on May 11, while he was at a friend’s house in Fardis, 45 km West of Tehran. The agents returned with them to his own home. They searched it and seized a computer, some religious books and other personal effects.

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

August 5, 2018

Nika Khalusi ends her prison term

HRANA, August 5, 2018. –

Nika Khalusi (نیکا خلوصی) has been released from prison in Mashhad at the end of her 5-year term. She began her sentence on April 30, 2014. She and her sister Nava (نوا خلوصی) were sentenced for “membership of the Bahai organisation, participation in illegal Bahai activities, and propaganda in favour of the Bahais and against the regime of the Islamic Republic.” Nava Khalusi, sentenced to four and a half years, was released on September 4, 2017. Their father, Manuchher Khalusi (منوچهر خلوصی) was released on July 31, 2017, at the end of a one-year sentence.

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

August 1, 2018

Three Bahais lose employment in Shiraz

Hamid Rezataghpour, July 31, 2018. –

In recent days, three Bahais in Shiraz have been dismissed from their employment because of their Bahai beliefs. Mr. Sahba Haqqbin (صهباء حق‌بین), a civil and structural engineer, his wife Samira Behinayin (سمیرا بهین‌آیین), a civil engineer, and Mr. Payam Gashtasbi (پیام گشتاسبی ), an accountant, had been employed by private companies in Shiraz. The were dismissed following instructions and pressure exerted by the security forces in Shiraz on the Directors of the companies employing them. Under Iran’s apartheid system, Bahais are not only barred from the civil service, they are not permitted to work in many sectors relating to personal services, because of a wide-spread superstition that Bahais are “unclean.” However engineering and accounting are not among the jobs barred to Bahais.

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

July 30, 2018

Ruhiyyeh Nariman and Farzad Delaram begin prison sentences


Shahrvandyar, July 28, 2018. –

In the last few days, Mrs. Ruhiyyeh Nariman (روحیه نریمان) and her husband Farzad Delaram (فرزاد دلارام) have been summoned to begin serving their prison sentences in Shiraz. The summons, sent via their bail agent, allows them one month to present themselves to prison. As previously reported, they were originally sentenced to five years in prison, but the Review Court reduced this to two years and six months for Ruhiyyeh Nariman and one year for Farzad Delaram.

They were arrested by agents from the intelligence arm of the Revolutionary Guard Corps on October 3, 2016, not long after the arrest of 14 other Bahais in Shiraz on September 29. Their home was thoroughly searched. Ten days later, they were released on bail of 200 million tumans (approx. $US 63,600). They were tried in the Revolutionary Court headed by Judge Sadati ( قاضی ساداتی) on February 26, 2017, but their sentences were not announced until early in March, 2018. They were charged with propaganda against the regime and membership of illegal Bahai groups. They have two children, one a child and the other a teenager.

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

 

July 28, 2018

Bahai student expelled from University in Isfahan


Shahrvanyar (Facebook), July 27, 2018. –

Sarir Mauqen (سریر موقن) has been expelled from the Azad University in Isfahan because of her Bahai beliefs. She learned of her expulsion on May 23, 2018, just before the final exams, when she was told by telephone that her file was incomplete and she should go to the Office of Education. She later found that she was barred from the University’s web site. When she went to the Office, she was told “you are a Bahai and should not have entered the University.” She was also denied a certificate showing the grades she had achieved.

Ms. Mauqen began her studies in 2014, and listed her religion as “Bahai” in the registration form. When she was expelled she in the last semester of a Master’s degree in Architecture, having already gained 135 of the 145 study point required for the degree. She had not promoted her Bahai beliefs during her time as a student (a policy issued by the secretariat at the Bahai World Centre in 2015 states that there is no objection to Bahai students signing a pledge not to teach their Faith at university).

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

 

July 27, 2018

Two Bahais sentenced in Yazd, five others have suspended sentences

HRANA, July 26, 2018. –

The Review Court in Yazd has revised the sentences of seven Bahais. Five of them, who had been sentenced to one year in prison in the lower court, have been given 3-year suspended sentences:

Sorur Forughi Mahdiabadi (سرور فروغی مهدی آبادی), a 69-year old resident of Yazd who was arrested in Tehran on February 21, 2017, and released on bail in Yazd at the end of March.

Farzad Rouhani Manshadi (فرزاد روحانی منشادی), Ramin Hosuri Sharaf-Abadi (رامین حصوری شرف آبادی) and Ahmad Ja`fari Na’imi (احمد جعفری نعیمی) three Bahais who were arrested in the course of raids on Bahai homes in Yazd on January 18, 2017, when masked agents seized religious books, flash memory sticks and computers. They were released on bail on February 21, 2017. Muhammad-Ali Tadrisi (محمدعلی تدریسی), who was arrested in his home in Yazd on January 24, 2017, and released on bail on February 1, has also been given a 3-year suspended sentence.

Mr. Uzzatallah Kharram (عزت الله خرم), also arrested on january 18, 2017, was exonerated of the unspecified charges and has been released.

However Mehran Eslami Amirabadi (مهران اسلامی امیرآبادی) was sentenced to 18 months in prison and one year of internal exile in Saravan. Mehran Bandi Amirabadi (مهران بندی امیرآبادی) was sentenced to one year in prison and one year in exile in Divandarreh. Mehran Eslami will probably serve two years and a half years in prison, because of a previous case. He was one of 20 Bahais who were arrested in central Iran in August 2012, and was sentenced on charges such as “propaganda against the regime,” to one year in prison, which he has since served, and a one-year suspended sentence. This suspended sentence may be added to his new 18-month sentence.

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

 

July 19, 2018

Bahai student expelled in Kerman


Shahrvandyar (Facebook), July 18, 2018. –

Houman Emani (هومن ایمانی), a student of graphic arts at the Free University in Kerman, has been expelled because of his Bahai beliefs. His expulsion occurred almost a year ago, but was not previously reported on Sen’s Daily.

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

July 18, 2018

Fataneh Nabilzadeh begins her sentence

Shahrvandyar, July 18, 2018. –

Fataneh Nabilzadeh (فتانه نبیل‌زاده), who has been sentenced to one year in prison for her association with the Bahai University (BIHE), was taken to prison in Mashhad on July 16. The BIHE is a distance-learning institute that offers education to Bahais, who are excluded from both state and private tertiary institutions under Iran’s form of apartheid. Educating Bahais is against state policies, although technically it is not against the law, since the policies are not published. On August 13, 2013, as part of a series of raids on the BIHE across Iran, security forces raided her home, searched it, and arrested her, along with two students who were taking an exam: her son Peyman Saraf (پیمان صراف) and Dayan Teymouri (دایان تیموری). The two students were bailed on September 5, but Mrs. Nabilzadeh was held for two months before being released on bail. In January 2018 she was sentenced to one year in prison for her educational activities.

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

July 15, 2018

Business closed and one arrest in Abadan


Shahrvandyar (Facebook), July 14, 2018. =

A sewing machine shop run by two Bahai brothers, Arman and Aram Azadi (آرمان آزادی و آرام آزادی) has been closed by the local authorities because of their Bahai identity and because they closed their business to observe a Bahai Holy Day. Aram Azadi’s wife, Nushin Afshar (نوشین افشار), has been arrested, and the operating licence of the business has been revoked. The brothers have run the shop for the past 38 years. Over the past 5 years, over 500 Bahai-run businesses have been shut down in Iran, in a policy of economic apartheid that also bars Bahais from the civil service and from private employment in many sectors of the economy.

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

July 10, 2018

Sheida Qoddusi granted prison furlough


Iran Press Watch, June 29, 2018. –

Sheida Qoddusi (شیدا قدوسی), who has served over a year of her 5-year sentence in Gorgan prison, began a 10-day furlough on June 27. She was one of about 20 Bahais who were arrested in Golestan Province in October, 2012, and later released on bail. They were tried by Judge Qanbari (قاضی قنبری). Sheida Qoddusi was initially sentenced to 11 years in prison, reduced to five years by the review court. She has two children.

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

June 20, 2018

Sentences reduced for Ruhiyyeh Nahriman and Farzad Delaram


Shahrvand-yar, June 19, 2018. –

The Review Court has reduced the sentences of Mrs. Ruhiyyeh Nahriman (روحیه نریمان) and her husband Farzad Delaram (فرزاد دلارام), Bahais from Shiraz, who were initially sentenced to five years in prison for their Bahai beliefs. Ruhiyyeh Nahriman is now sentenced to two years and six month in prison and her husband to one year in prison. They were arrested by agents from the intelligence arm of the Revolutionary Guard Corps on October 3, 2016, not long after the arrest of 14 other Bahais in Shiraz on September 29. Their home was thoroughly searched. Ten days later, they were released on bail of 200 million tumans (approx. $US 63,600). They were tried in the Revolutionary Court headed by Judge Sadati ( قاضی ساداتی) on February 26, 2017, but their sentences were not announced until early in March, 2018. They were charged with propaganda against the regime and membership of illegal Bahai groups. They have two children, one a child and the other a teenager.

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

June 16, 2018

Khodadaad Miri free on bail

Bazdasht, June 14, 2018. –

Mr. Khodadaad Miri (خداداد میری), who was arrested in Kermanshah by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on May 6, was freed on bail on June 13. He has been charged with making propaganda against the regime in the form of teaching the Bahai Faith. During his five-week interrogation period he was not allowed access to a lawyer and had only one brief telephone contact with his family, to inform them he was being detained. Mr. Miri is from Mazandaran, where he owned a bookstore, but he was forced by the authorities to sell it a few years ago, and then took his family to Kermanshah.

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

June 13, 2018

Town Mayor bans Bahais from buying land


Shahrvandyar, June 12, 2018. –

The Mayor of Sorkhrud, a town on the Caspian Coast, has issued a decree banning Bahais from buying or selling land of any sort. The instruction was contained in a letter addressed to all the town’s real estate agents. The Mayor’s name is Seyyid-Muhammad Mehdi Musavinezhad (سیدمحمد مهدی موسوی نژاد). He has recently been part of a campaign to ban pictures and quotes of ex-President Khatami from the Iranian media.

Bahai student expelled in Zanjan


Centre for Human Rights in Iran, June 12 (?), 2018. –

Soha Izadi (سها ایزدی), a student of Information Technology Engineering at the University of Zanjan, was expelled from the University on March 14, 2018 due to “being Bahai.” She had completed almost one year of studies, and was in the midst of the end-of-semester examinations when university officials contacted her to say they had received a letter from the “moral standards” section of the national “Educational Appraisals Agency” which meant that she could not continue education. She was removed from the student register and her access to the university web site was blocked. When she pursued the matter, the university officials told her the only way she could be re-admitted was to renounce her Bahai religion. An indication of how long this educational apartheid policy has endured in Iran is that both her mother and her father were also excluded from enrolling in tertiary education, using the “incomplete file” excuse (that is, the religion section did not say “Muslim” so the file was “incomplete”).

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

Soheil Keshavarz begins his sentence in Qazvin

HRANA, June 12, 2018. –

On June 9, Soheil Keshavarz (سهیل کشاورز), a Bahai living in Qazvin, was arrested and taken to Qazvin prison to begin serving his six-month sentence. He was initially arrested on December 20, 2016, when four security agents raided his home. On December 24, agents raided the home of his father, Sohrab Keshavarz (سهراب کشاور), and seized Bahai books and personal effects. Then they took him with them to the home of Soheil Keshavarz (who was still being detained — he was held for interrogation for 25 days), and searched it again. His bail, trial and sentencing was not previously reported on Sen’s Daily. This report does not specify the charges.

June 2, 2018

Bahai student expelled in Gorgan


Hamid Rezataghipour, May 29, 2018. –

Shakib Teymouri (شکیب تیموری), a graduate student in mechanical engineering at Gorgan University, was expelled on May 27. University officials excluded him from the university web site and from registration. The university refused also to document the Bachelor’s degree he had already achieved. He began his studies late in the autumn of 2014, and entered the Master’s course in 2016.

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

May 31, 2018

Neda Sabeti, Nooshin Afshar and Foroogh Farzaneh released


Kampaign, May 30, 2019. –

Ms. Neda Sabeti-Azadi (ندا ثابتی -آزادی), Ms. Nooshin Afshar-Azadi (نوشین افشار) and Ms. Foroogh Farzaneh (فروغ فرزانه ), Bahais living in Ahvaz who were detained by the Ministry of Intelligence in raids on their homes on May 6, have been released on bail from Sepidar Prison in Ahvaz. They were previously released on May 12, only to be summoned to the Prosecutor’s Office on May 13 and arrested again.

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

May 28, 2018

Shahnam Jadhbani begins his prison sentence

Mahvash Zaeri (Facebook), May 27, 2018.

Shahnam Jadhbani ( شهنام جذبانی ) is reported to have been arrested in his home in Minudasht and taken to Gonbad to begin serving a sentence that may be as long as eleven years. He and his wife Shohreh Samimi ( شهره صمیمی ) were arrested in Minudasht in October 2012. Around the same time, 20 other Bahais were arrested in Golestan Province by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence, acting without warrants. Many Bahai homes homes were searched, with the seizure of computers, books and family photo albums. They were initially given very long sentences, but these were all reduced by the review court to less than two years, except that review court did not at that time announce its decision on the cases of Shahnam Jadhbani ( شهنام جذبانی ) from Minudasht and Shayda Qodousi (شيدا قدوسي) from Gorgan, who were sentenced to 11 years in prison. Mr. Jadhbani’s sentence may also have been reduced, in which case that will be reported within the next few days.

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

Kaviz Nuzdehi free in Mashhad


Mahvash Zaeri, citing Shahrvandyar, May 27, 2018.

Kaviz Nuzdehi ( کاویز نوزدهی ), a Mashhad Bahai, was released on bail on May 27. He was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on May 2, and has has previously served a two-year prison sentence, from July 2010 to June 2012. That time, the charges against him were propaganda against the regime, endangering national security, membership and activity in the Bahai Faith, etc. He has been the subject of speculation by Damavand News, which identified him as — probably — the unidentified Bahai whom the Deputy Prosecutor of Mashhad claimed was held for links to the Mujahedin (MKO, and organisation that has practiced and preached revolution and violence). Given that he has been released on bail after one month in detention, that identification now looks very unlikely.

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

May 23, 2018

Bahai in Mashhad said to be linked to Mujahedin

Damavand News, May 22, 2018.

Hasan Heidari (حسن حیدری), Deputy Prosecutor of Khorasan Razavi Province has claimed in an interview with the local website of Mashhad (capital of the Province) that an unnamed Bahai has been arrested in Mashhad by the Ministry of Intelligence, under a special judicial order referring to the “arrest of the leadership of the hypocrite terrorist organisation.” The term is usually Iranian code for the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MKO), which has advocated revolution and violence. Mr. Heidari said that the Bahai had been accused of collaborating with a political organization, and that “this individual had sought to provide broader grounds for activities to undermine security, by promulgating and misusing the demands of the industry guilds that are part of the Iranian system.” In other words, he was a worker’s rights activist. Iran has seen widespread worker protests, strikes and market shut-downs in recent weeks, and the tactic of connecting these to an external terrorist organisation and/or the Bahais may be a device to divert attention from the grievances of workers and small shop-keepers (who close their shops as a form of protest).

Damavand News, which reports this interview, expresses reservations that it has the whole picture, and the story as reported raises a number of questions. In the first place, did the Deputy Prosecutor intend to refer to the Mujahedin or is it hyperbole for the Green Movement? The accusation of “links to a political group” seems unusually mild if the Mujahedin was intended. In the second place, the only Bahai known to have been arrested in Mashhad recently is Kaviz Nuzdehi ( کاویز نوزدهی ), arrested on May 2. Damavand News cites a source saying that, given the timing, the reference can only be to Mr. Nuzdehi. But another possibility is that the Deputy Prosecutor did not have any specific Bahai in mind. Claims that a group of Bahais have been arrested for this an that – without specifics – are sometimes made by officials seeking to assure the public that they are doing their jobs by keeping the Bahais under pressure. Generally speaking, no specifics or trials follow from such claims. Reliable reports of the actual persecution of Bahais in Iran always comes from family members and associates, not from official statements, and contain names, dates and other specifics that can be checked.

May 22, 2018

Ministry of Intelligence bars Maku Bahai from keeping bees

HRANA, May 21, 2018. –

The Ministry of Intelligence in Maku has told Shahin Dehqan ( شاهین دهقان), a Bahai who has been working as a beekeeper for the past 17 years, that he must sell his hives within ten days, or he will be jailed and his hives will be confiscated. Bahais are barred from working in many sectors of Iran’s economy, but the rules are not published and new sectors are barred to Bahais periodically, giving the economic apartheid system in Iran the appearance of arbitrary oppression.

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

May 19, 2018

Pakistan announces a welfare grant and scholarships for Bahais

The News, May 19, 2018.

Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony, Sardar Muhammad Yousaf, has announced a grant of Rs500,000 (3600 euros ; $US 4300) for the welfare of the Bahai community, as well as offering scholarships to its students. He was speaking at a celebration of the Bahai festival of Ridvan, and expressed joy at the presence there of prominent personalities from other communities, including Muslim, Hindu, Christian and Parsi (Indian Zoroastrians).

While Bahai teachings do not allow the Bahai communities to apply external donations to their own religious activities, such funds can be used by the Bahai community for charitable purposes. The report does not explain whether scholarships are being offered specifically to Bahai students, or the Bahai community is being included among the eligible religious minorities. The state (not federal) minorities scholarships I researched are all income-tested as well as being targeted for minorities.

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

May 15, 2018

Three Bahai women in Ahvaz re-arrested


Hamid Rezataghipour, May 14, 2018. –

Ms. Neda Sabeti-Azadi (ندا ثابتی -آزادی), Ms. Nooshin Afshar-Azadi (نوشین افشار) and Ms. Foroogh Farzaneh (فروغ فرزانه ), who were detained by the Ministry of Intelligence in raids on their homes on May 6, and released on May 12, were summoned to the Prosecutor’s Office on May 13 and arrested again.

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

Mitra Zahdi and Farajollah Bengaleh bailed in Ahvaz

Shahrevandyar, May 14, 2018. –

Mrs. Mitra Barnezhad-Zahdi (میترا بدرنژاد زهدی), who was arrested in Ahvaz on March 3, and Mr. Farajollah Bengaleh ( فرج اله بنگاله), who was arrested on March 28 in Shiraz and later transferred by the Ministry of Intelligence to Ahvaz, have both been released on bail of 200 million tumans each (40,000 euros ; $US 47,500). It appears that no charges have been laid. In both cases, their houses were searched at the time of their arrests, and religious items were seized.

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

May 13, 2018

Three Bahai detainees released in Ahvaz

HRANA, May 13, 2018. –

Three young Bahai women who were arrested in Ahvaz on May 6 were released from Ahvaz prison on May 12. They are Ms. Neda Sabeti-Azadi (ندا ثابتی -آزادی), Ms. Nooshin Afshar-Azadi (نوشین افشار), Ms. Foroogh Farzaneh (فروغ فرزانه ). During the week that they were detained, their families went to the prison and were told that their children were not there [probably because they were detained by the Ministry of Intelligence ~ Sen]. The families went to the cities of Abadan and Khoramshahr to look for their children, and while they were there, Ahvaz Prison contacted them to say their children had been released.

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

May 12, 2018

One new arrest in Tehran

HRANA, May 12, 2018. –

Mehrdad Heyrani (مهرداد حیرانی), a Bahai living in Tehran, was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on May 11, and taken to an unknown place. The agents came to his home, but he was at a friend’s house in Fardis, 45 km West of Tehran. The agents went there and arrested him and took him with them to his own home. They searched it and seized a computer, some religious books and other personal effects.

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

Mahsa Mahdavi released from prison

mahsa-mahdavi-kampain-info_-324x160
Radio Zamaneh (web site), May 11, 2018.

Mahsa Mahdavi (مهسا مهدوی) was released from Vakil Abad Prison in Mashhad on May 10, after serving an 8-month sentence for her Bahai beliefs. She was one of four Bahais arrested in Mashhad in September, 2012, who were sentenced in May, 2013: her sentence was the shortest. They were accused of teaching the Bahai Faith, propaganda against the regime and membership of Bahai organisations.

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

May 11, 2018

Four homes searched, 3 arrested in Abadan (update)


Iran Press Watch, May 10, 2018.

According to Ostanwire (of iranwire.com), on Sunday morning of May 6, 2018, agents of the Ministry of Information of Abadan City in southwest Iran performed an orchestrated raid of the residences of four Bahais, during which three Bahais were arrested and taken to an unknown location.

Security forces in the border town of Abadan went to the homes of four Bahais; Ms. Neda Sabeti-Azadi (ندا ثابتی -آزادی), Ms. Nooshin Afshar-Azadi (نوشین افشار), Ms. Foroogh Farzaneh (فروغ فرزانه ), and Ms. Mah-Monir Ehsani, and after thorough search of their homes confiscated all their mobiles, laptops, computers and religious books and arrested Ms. Sabeti, Ms. Afshar, and Ms. Farzaneh. In each case, the raids were conducted by six agents in possession of search warrants, while a few security forces remained on guard outside. Some reports specify that the agents came mainly from the Ministry of Intelligence in the provincial capital, Ahvaz, with one local agent from Abadan in each team, and that they briefly questioned all the family members present during the raids.

The arrest of Ms. Neda Sabeti was previously reported on Sen’s Daily, the widespread raids and two additional arrests were not. It is not known where the detainees are being held.

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

May 8, 2018

Navid Khanjani released after 6 years in prison

Navid Khanjani is holding the red flowers


VOA, May 7, 2018.

Navid Khanjani (نوید خانجانی) has been released from Rajai Shahr prison, near Tehran.

Mr. Khanjani’s original 12-year sentence was due to his peaceful activities in defending human rights and the right to education. With the implementation of Article 134 of the Penal Code, the diverse charges against him were integrated, and he was sentenced to five years in prison with a release date on June 6, 2017. At the last moment he was informed that his one-year sentence from a different case was being implemented immediately and he would remain in prison.

Mr. Khanjani was arrested the first time on March 1, 2010, by the Ministry of Intelligence and was released on bail after about two months of interrogation and solitary confinement. On December 20, 2010, Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court, presided by Judge Yahya PirAbassi (قاضی یحیی پیرعباسی), sentenced him on the following charges:

+ Spreading false news,
+ Disturbing public opinion,
+ Propaganda against the Islamic Republic through disseminating news reports,
+ Appearing in interviews with foreign TV and radio stations,
+ Membership of the Central Council of the Human rights Reporters Committee,
+ Establishing the “Deprived of Education” group

An informed source at the time of sentencing (February 2011) said that “During the trial, the lawyer’s defense was basically not considered.” Mr. Khanjani, has not been allowed any furlough since his detention in August 2012.

Mr. Khanjani’s one-year sentence, now completed, is due to the “Sarand Camp Case.” He was one of 35 civil society activists who had gone to Varzaghan in East Azarbaijan on August 11, 2012 to help the earthquake victims. They were arrested by the police and their camp was shut down. Most of the activists were released, but due to his existing sentence of 12 years, Mr. Khanjani remained in custody.

Mr. Khanjani, now aged 31, is a former member of the “Human Rights Activists,” “Human Rights Reporters Committee,” and founder of ” The Association Opposing Educational Discrimination.”

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

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