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Iran

    January 28, 2013

    Iran must release all journalists being held solely for carrying out their legitimate work, Amnesty International urged after at least 14 reporters were arrested in the past three days amid police raids on newspaper offices.

    The journalists are reportedly accused of cooperating with "anti-revolutionary" Persian-language media organizations outside Iran.

    "This latest example of locking-up Iran's journalists is a result of draconian restrictions on reporting which violate the right to freedom of expression and must be relaxed," said Ann Harrison, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Program.

    "All journalists who are imprisoned in Iran merely for peacefully doing their job should be released immediately and unconditionally."

    The latest to be arrested – Keyvan Mehrgan, formerly of the newspaper Shargh, and Hossein Taghchi – were reportedly arrested today.

    January 23, 2013

    A prominent Iranian human rights lawyer was returned to prison on Monday, unexpectedly curtailing a three-day temporary leave to visit her family, which was expected to be extended. 

    Nasrin Sotoudeh, who has been serving a six-year prison sentence since September 2010, was granted her first furlough from Tehran’s Evin Prison on 17 January on production of a hefty bail.

    Amnesty International has long campaigned for her unconditional release as a prisoner of conscience, as she was jailed solely for her peaceful work as a human rights lawyer.

    Sotoudeh has denied all the charges against her, which include “spreading propaganda against the system” and belonging to an “illegal” organization, the Centre for Human Rights Defenders. 

    “Nasrin Sotoudeh, whose human rights work has been recognized internationally, including when she was awarded the EU’s Sakharov Prize last year, is a prisoner of conscience who must be released immediately, unconditionally and for good,” said Ann Harrison, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Program.

    January 18, 2013

    The execution in Iran this week of a 21-year-old man for a crime he allegedly committed while apparently still a juvenile shows a deplorable disregard for international law, Amnesty International said.

    According to state-run media agency Mehr, Ali (Kianoush) Naderi was executed in Raja’i Shahr Prison in Karaj, north-west of Tehran on Wednesday.

    He had been sentenced to death for his alleged role in the murder more than four years ago - when he was apparently still only 17 years old - of an elderly woman during the course of a burglary.

    Those under the age of 18 at the time of their alleged offence are considered to be children under international law and their execution is strictly prohibited

    Two other youths involved in the robbery received 15 years’ imprisonment each for theft convictions.

    “Ali Naderi’s execution shows Iran’s deplorable disregard for international standards on the death penalty,” said Ann Harrison, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Programme.

    November 12, 2012

    Zia Nabavi (Sayed Ziaoddin Nabavi) is a member of the Council to Defend the Right to Education, a body set up in 2009 by students barred from further study because of their political activities or on account of their being Baha’is. He was arrested in June 2009, along with his cousin Atefeh Nabavi who was later sentenced to four years in prison. He was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment and 74 lashes in January 2010, which was reduced to 10 years to be served in internal exile. 

    Please join the Amnesty International Edmonton chapter as we present one of this year's International Week Keynote speakers, Marina Nemat, who will be sharing her remarkable story of courage and how she managed to transform herself from victim to survivor to activist.

     

    Marina was born in 1965 in Tehran, Iran. After the Islamic Revolution of 1979, she was arrested at the age of sixteen. Her “crime”: complaining when the math and history lessons in her school were replaced by Koran instruction and political propaganda. She spent more than two years in Evin, a political prison in Tehran, where she was tortured and came very close to execution.

    In the submission prepared for the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Iran in October-November 2014, Amnesty International noted the following concerns:
     

    Executions, including of juvenile offenders, carried out in violation of international standards for fair trial. Torture and other ill-treatment in detention centres continue to be committed with impunity, Violence against women and girls, Discrimination on grounds of sex, sexual orientation, ethnic identity or religious belief. Religious and ethnic minorities. Criminalization of Adult same-sex sexual conduct. Undue restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly, affecting in particular human rights defenders, trade unionists, women’s rights activists, journalists and student activists, Control of universities, including by limiting academic freedoms.

    Read the full report here

    Rosewater marks the feature-film writing and directing debut of former "The Daily Show" host Jon Stewart. Based on the thrilling true-life story of Maziar Bahari, Rosewater follows the Tehran-born, Canadian-based Bahari as the journalist returns to Iran to interview Mir-Hossein Mousavi, challenger to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the country's contentious 2009 presidential election. As Mousavi's supporters were protesting Ahmadinejad's victory declaration even before the polls closed, Bahari endured personal risk by sending footage of the street riots to the BBC. For this, Bahari was arrested by police led by a man known only as "Rosewater." He was tortured and interrogated over the next 118 days, while his wife embarked on an international campaign to have her husband freed and media outlets kept the story alive.

    The film features Gael García Bernal as Maziar Bahari, and an international cast that includes Shohreh Aghdashloo and Kim Bodnia.

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