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Iran: Authorities must release Dr. Homa Hoodfar as her health deteriorates and human rights backdrop worsens

    Credit: Concordia University
    August 30, 2016

    Amnesty International is gravely concerned by the rapid deterioration in the health of Dr. Homa Hoodfar, who has been detained in Iran since June 6. Amnesty International reiterates that it considers Dr. Hoodfar to be a prisoner of conscience, detained with no legal basis, and calls on Iranian authorities to release her immediately and unconditionally.

     “The Iranian authorities must immediately and unconditionally release prisoner of conscience Dr. Homa Hoodfar, whose continued detention in the notorious Evin prison is not only illegal, but is now also seriously affecting her health and placing her in grave danger.” said Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada.

     Recent Amnesty International research has revealed that Iranian authorities have undertaken a broad and chilling crackdown against women’s rights activists and researchers. In another report, Amnesty International uncovered that Iran systematically employs deprivation of healthcare as a method of torture, to coerce “confessions” from people being held in the countries’ prisons. 

     “Tragically, the condemnable treatment of Dr. Hoodfar occurs against a bleak and deteriorating human rights backdrop in Iran where authorities are engaged in a crackdown against women’s rights activists and researchers, as well as routinely using denial of healthcare as a means of securing coerced ‘confessions’ from prisoners held on bogus and illegal grounds. Canadian authorities have indicated they are deeply engaged on Dr. Hoodfar’s case, but these developments in her health underscore the need for those efforts to be intensified even further.”

     A professor of Anthropology at the Concordia University, Dr. Homa Hoodfar’s academic work includes research related to development, family law, refugees, women and electoral politics and human rights. Dr. Hoodfar suffers from a neurological condition for which she requires regular access to specialized medical care and medication. Since her detainment on June 6, 2016, Dr. Hoodfar has been held incommunicado the majority of the time with no access to her family or loved ones.      


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