Iran continues its persecution of Human Rights Defenders: Narges Mohammadi detained

May 3, 2012

Prominent human rights defender Narges Mohammadi was arrested last month. On Wednesday 26 April Reporters Without Borders (RSF) in Paris said the group “strongly condemns” her jailing. Narges Mohammadi was a spokeswoman for Ebadi’s now-banned Center for Human Rights Defenders.

She was reportedly detained on Saturday 21 April and brought to Tehran’s Evin prison to begin serving a six-year sentence following a conviction in 2010 after she was accused of anti-government crimes. Mohammadi had remained free pending appeals. Ebadi left Iran after the disputed re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2009, which touched off unprecedented protests and harsh crackdowns by authorities. Several of her co-workers have been arrested and harassed, such as Nasrin Sotoudeh, recently announced as a 2012 nominee of the Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders (www.martinennalsaward.org).

For more details on her case see: http://www.iranhumanrights.org/2012/04/narges-arrest/

Reporters Without Borders is concerned by the case because Narges is a journalist and author. In its recently released report on press freedom in 2011, the organisation ranks Iran number 175 outr of 179 countries surveyed. I states inter alia: “It is no surprise that the same trio of countries, Eritrea, Turkmenistan and North Korea, absolute dictatorships that permit no civil liberties, again occupy the last three places in the index. This year, they are immediately preceded at the bottom by Syria, Iran and China, three countries that seem to have lost contact with reality as they have been sucked into an insane spiral of terror, and by Bahrain and Vietnam, quintessential oppressive regimes. Other countries such as Uganda and Belarus have also become much more repressive.”

For the full report go to:

http://en.rsf.org/press-freedom-index-2011-2012,1043.html

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