TORONTO: Homa Hoodfar, Mohamed Fahmy, Alex Neve speak at Event to Free Saeed Malekpour
With Prof. Homa Hoodfar, Mohamed Fahmy and other ex-prisoners of conscience.
Friday, February 3, 2017, 6:30 to 8:30 PM
University of Toronto Earth Sciences Building Auditorium,
5 Bancroft Avenue, Toronto
Launching a campaign for the release of Saeed Malekpour, a Canadian permanent resident unjustly locked in Iranian prisons for over 8 years.
Saeed Malekpour is an Iranian-born computer programmer who immigrated to Victoria B.C. and was arrested while on a trip to Iran in 2008. Initially sentenced to death on charges of “spreading corruption on earth,” he is now condemned to life in prison and has already served over eight years, and endured torture and solitary confinement. Malekpour’s indictment was based on confessions obtained under torture and he has been deprived of a fair trial.
“Sayeed Malekpour’s more than eight years of imprisonment in Iran is a profound injustice and should be intolerable to anyone who cares about human rights. He must be freed without delay,” says Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada. “As a Canadian permanent resident imprisoned on the basis of a false confession obtained under torture, it is essential that the government of Canada do everything possible to seek his immediate and unconditional release.”
- Dr. Homa Hoodfar, professor emeritus of anthropology at Concordia University, was recently released from Iranian prison.
- Mohamed Fahmy is an award-winning Egyptian-Canadian journalist who was imprisoned in Egypt before returning to Canada in 2015.
- Maryam Malekpour, sister of Saeed Malekpour.
- Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada
Why a Campaign for Malekpour Now: negotiations between Canada and Iran to restore diplomatic ties are a crucial opportunity to bring an end to Saeed Malekpour’s ordeal and to take the necessary steps to gain his freedom.
The Event: includes statements from former political prisoners who have spoken little of their ordeal until now, as well as prominent human rights advocates. It will also unveil a work of art made in prison by Saeed Malekpour.
It follows a panel on academic freedom, organized by the University of Toronto Faculty Association, from 3.30 to 5.30 pm. Reception and refreshments, 5.30 to 6.30 pm.
List of Confirmed Speakers:
- Prof. Payam Akhavan, Professor of Law, McGill University, Member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague.
- Mostafa Azizi, Former prisoner of conscience, Saeed Malekpour’s former cellmate.
- Hon. Irwin Cotler, Former Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada.
- Ali Ehsassi, MP for Willowdale.
- Mohamed Fahmy, award-winning journalist and ex-prisoner of conscience.
- Linda Frum, Conservative senator and co-host of Iran Accountability Week.
- Hamid Ghassemi-Shall, Former prisoner of conscience, Malekpour’s former cellmate.
- Prof. Homa Hoodfar, Professor Emeritus, Concordia University, Former prisoner of conscience.
- Hélène Laverdière, NDP Critic for Foreign Affairs and MP for Laurier-Sainte-Marie.
- Maryam Malekpour, Saeed’s sister.
- Hon. Dr. Reza Moridi, Ontario Minister of Research, Innovation and Science, MPP for Richmond Hill.
- Maryam Nayeb Yazdi, Human rights activist, founder of Persian2English blog.
- Alex Neve, Secretary General, Amnesty International Canada.
For more information and interviews please contact:
Associate Professor of Linguistics
Department of Language Studies
University of Toronto Mississauga