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Farzad Kamangar and four other political prisoners executed Page 5

Fear of Tehran haunts Iranian refugees in Turkey Page 2

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News bulletin of the Iranian Progressive Youth

Tehran’s Prosecutor: Six death sentences issued, 217 imprisonments confirmed Source: RAHANA


Bodies will not be delivered for burial to their families Source: Street Journalist

May 15, 2010

ehran’s Prosecutor: 217 prison sentences have been confirmed, six death sentences have been issued, and Mousavi’s support of the five executed is considered a crime. RAHANA -Tehran’s prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi referred to the recent protests against the executions of Farzad Kamangar, Shirin Alam Hooli, Mehdi Eslamian, Farhad Vakili, and Ali Heydarian as “an atmosphere of arrogance by the world media.” He added that the statements made by Mir Hossein Mousavi are considered crimes. “His support of these individuals is a new crime and this matter will be looked into when the day of sentencing arrives for the opposition.” In an interview with Fars News, Dolatabadi stated that ten death sentences were issued against individuals arrested after the election, particularly on Ashura. He added that the death sentences for Ahmad Daneshpour Moghadam, Mohsen Daneshpour Moghadam, and Alireza Ghanbari was confirmed by the Appeals Court. The three prisoners have filed an amnesty appeal. Dolatabadi added, “Three other individuals, Motehareh Bahrami Haghighi, Reyhane Haj Ebrahim Dabagh, and Hadi Ghaemi were sentenced to death by the lower court, but their sentences were reduced to imprisonment in the appeals court.” Tehran’s prosecutor stated that


Arsalan Abadi and Mohammad Amin Valian have been acquitted from the crime of Mohareb (enemy of God) and added, “The sentences for the 217 people arrested after the election is final. The appeals have been looked at and the sentences are now final.” Jafari Dolatabadi stated, “We currently have three confirmed death sentences for Mohammad Ali Saremi, Jafar Kazemi, and Mohamad Ali Haj Aghai.” He added that the three prisoners are supporters of the opposition. Tehran’s prosecutor stated, “The prosecutor charged ten individuals with the crime of being a Mohareb in connection with the events of Ashura. Of these ten, Arsalan Abadi and Mohammad Amin Valian were acquitted of their charges. The charges associated with three individuals were confirmed, the charges associated with three others were reduced, and the charges associated with the final two individuals have not been addressed as we await their trail.” In reference to Mir Hossein Mousavi’s threat to confront the judiciary system in the future, Dolatabadi stated, “If he has not been arrested yet, it is not due to our inability, lack of intention, neglect or because we agree with them, but rather because the timing is currently not right.” He added, “When the time is right, much like a fruit that has ripened, action shall be taken.”

May 14, 2010


rana News – Families of prisoners executed on May 9th that have been staying in Tehran to receive the bodies of their loved ones returned to their hometowns while intelligence office refused to deliver the bodies to them. They were told by officials that the place of burial will be announced in 10 days. According to Hrana new reporters, intelligence office refused to deliver bodies of Farzad Kamangar, Shirin Alamhooie, Mehdi Islamian, Ali Heydarian and Farhad Vakili while in the recent day’s families by taking conservative route tried to calm the situation down to make officials deliver bodies of their loved ones to them. Intelligence office had previously announced that delivering bodies of 5 executed political prisoners will be a guarantee of peace and especially in Kurdistan. However, not only this office refused to deliver the bodies, but by summoning and arresting family members of executed prisoners threatened them to not hold funeral ceremonies or participate in any rallies in Kurdistan. Following the threatening behavior of intelligence office, mother and sister of Shirin Alamhooie were arrested on Tuesday morning. They were released on bail shortly after. There were attempts to arrest entire Kamangar family. Also, Ali Heydarian’s brother was summoned and threatened by Sanandaj intelligence office.

Fear of Tehran haunts Iranian refugees in Turkey Source: Yahoo News May 14, 2010


EVSEHIR, Turkey (AFP) – Tortured in jails and threatened with death, Behzad, Siyavash and Ali have, like hundreds of dissident Iranians, found refuge in Turkey, but peace of mind is still eluding them as fear of Tehran’s agents remains a daily torment. While fellow opposition activists are preparing to hold protests in Iran at the anniversary of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s disputed re-election on June 12, 2009, Behzad (not his real name) leads a secluded life in a shabby flat in Nevsehir, central Turkey. “The tortures that I went through and those that I witnessed -- an animal would not do that to another animal,” said the young man. His only fault, he said, was to have participated in a student protest challenging the election results last year. Showing pictures of his back scarred by bruises after a fourmonth stint in prison, Behzad lists the horrors to which he was subjected: beating, sexual abuse, forced insomnia, cold water dousing and the terror of standing blindfolded in what turned out to be a mock execution. “After a while, I would have confessed anything, I could not stand it anymore,” he said. “They wanted confessions about my father, that he had ties with America and Israel ... And they forced me to say so.” The confessions secured his freedom. Several weeks later, Behzad sneaked into neighbouring Turkey, crossing the mountainous border on horseback, in the company of smugglers, like many Iranian exiles.

According to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), some 4,000 Iranian asylum seekers and refugees -- political AFP/File – An Iranian refugee Siavash stands dissidents but also converts to Christian- on a terrace during an interview in Kayseri, on ity, homosexuals and May 4. Tortured in … followers of the mi- by Nicolas Cheviron Nicolas Cheviron – Fri nority Bahai faith -- are May 14, 12:03 pm ET registered in Turkey, their main exit route. The applicants’ numbers since refugee arrived in Nevsehir and last year’s presidential polls -- disappeared the following day, standing at 1,828 between July leaving behind only unpacked and March -- does not represent suitcases. a significant increase. But their Behzad’s friend, Siyavash, also profile has changed, according speaks of a strong sense of into the UNHCR. security as he shows burns from “Many of the newcomers are electric shock on his thighs after journalists, academics and/or several months in an Iranian jail. perceived by the regime to be “One night, about midnight, supporting the opposition,” said three drunk men tried to break Metin Corabatir, the organisa- the door of my building, shouttion’s spokesman in Turkey. ing. Fortunately, my Turkish Stuck in Nevsehir, one of the 32 neighbours downstairs interTurkish cities accommodating vened,” he said. asylum seekers, Behzad is wait- Facing the death sentence for aling for the UN to decide his fate leged blasphemy, Ali managed and arrange a Western country to flee to Turkey in September, to accept him. before he was convicted. Eager Handicapped with a stiff leg -- to speak out on what he was the result of a blow from a police forced to keep silent in Iran, the truncheon during a demonstra- young dissident says he has altion -- and suffering psychologi- ready been threatened. cal problems, he lives in pov- Following a meeting with a jourerty. nalist, “I was stopped by three But his main problem is the fear. Iranians on a deserted street at “Here, I am afraid of everything: midnight. They held a knife to the police, Iranian agents and all my throat and told me it was my Iranians here -- I fear they will last interview,” he recounted. make reports on me. Sometimes Questioned by AFP, local poI am even scared to go out,” he lice said they advised Iranian said. refugees against speaking to the For him, the presence of Irani- media to avoid the risk of reprisan agents pursuing dissidents is als. beyond doubt: in late November, he recounted, an Iranian

Farzad Kamangar’s Family Under House Arrest Source: HRANA May 14, 2010


RA News Agency- It was reported on May 13, 2010 that intelligence and security forces, by using intimidation and threats, have put the Kamangar family under house arrest after they returned home to Kamyaran from Tehran. The Kamangar family returned home after the judiciary system’s refusal to release the bodies of the five executed prisoners. Security forces have cut off the phone to Kamangar’s house and threatened that any phone communication by the family will result in their arrest. Yesterday, security forces attempted to arrest all members of the Kamangar family upon their arrival to Evin prison. People intervened to prevent the arrests.

Hunger Strike at the University of Kurdistan

HRANA Reports on General Strike in Kurdistan

Source: Daneshjoo News


May 12, 2010


ccording to Daneshjoo News, on May 12, 2010, students at the University of Kurdistan went on hunger strike to protest the inhuman execution of Farzad Kamangar, Shirin Alam Hooli, Farhad Vakili, Mehdi Eslamian, and Ali Heydarian. To demonstrate their protest, the students left their uneaten lunch in the cafeteria or outside the school building. After the executions on May 9, 2010, there has been a heavier presence of security forces at the University of Kurdistan. A number of activists have been confronted with phone calls by anonymous forces who have threatened them with arrest.

Source: HRANA May 13, 2010

RA News Agency- Following the call from Kurdish organizations, civil institutions, political activists, and various parties to hold a general strike throughout Kurdish-populated areas, a general strike was widely held, even though the Kurdish territories were heavily militarized by regime forces. According to HRANA reporters, the strike was at its highest level in the city of Sanandaj which was completely shut down. A significant percentage of shops as well as peddlers did not open for business in objection to the May 9th executions. Shopkeepers on Ferdowsi, 6th-Bahman, Gozar, and Namaki streets closed their doors in a coordinated fashion. A clash was reported between citizens and security forces

in the village of Nosood. Bullets were fired into the air to disperse the people. Reports from Marivan, Bukan, Divandareh, Mahabad, Oshnooyeh, and several other cities indicate that there have been large numbers of participants on strike. It has also been reported that large numbers of people from various cities visited the residences of the executed prisoners in the Sanandaj and Kamyaran to show their sympathy and support.

IRAN: Cannes 2010: Imprisoned filmmaker Jafar Panahi is honored at film festival [Corrected] Source: Los Angeles Times May 13, 2010


mid the glitter and gaiety of the 63rd Cannes Film Festival opening, one of the nine chairs for jury members remained empty. Internationally acclaimed Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi, slated to serve as a jury member at the festival, couldn’t attend because he was being held in Tehran’s Evin prison. In March 2010, plainclothes security officials raided Panahi’s Tehran home and arrested him along with his wife, daughter and 15 house guests. Though Iranian authorities shortly released the others, they held on to Panahi, accusing him of “making a film against the regime following the post-election events,” according to the French daily Le Figaro. Despite this, the prosecutor’s office in Tehran argues that Panahi’s imprisonment has no political motive. “The arrest of Jafar Panahi is not because he is an artist or for political reason[s],” prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi told the Iranian Students News Agency. “He is accused of some crimes and was arrested with another person following an order by a judge,” reported BBC News. Authorities had previously arrested Panahi, a supporter of the protest movement that emerged after last year’s disputed presi-

dential elections held in June, for participating in a memorial service for Neda Agha-Soltan, the young woman killed in July 2009 allegedly at the hands of a pro-government militiaman. Upon Panahi’s release, they prohibited him from traveling outside Iran, effectively blocking his scheduled participation in the 2010 Berlin Film Festival. On the vanguard of the Iranian neorealist-film movement, Panahi films explore the sensitive social dimensions of life in his country, garnering international popularity. His ties to Cannes extend back to 1995, when his first feature film, “White Balloon,” won the Caméra d’Or at Cannes. The movie examines the relationship between an Iranian family and an Afghan refugee during the Persian New Year. In 2003, Panahi won the jury award in the Un Certain Regard category, which spotlighted rising filmmakers, for “Crimson Gold,” a socially charged movie about class differences in Iran. The government has strictly banned the movie, which has been screened in more than 40 other countries. There were outcries over Panahi’s detainment from the film industry as well as human rights groups and diplomats. Hollywood heavyhitters including Martin Scorsese, Robert Redford, Francis Ford Coppola, Robert De Niro and Steven Spielberg led a petition for Panahi’s release last month. Amnesty International recently condemned the Iranian government for Panahi’s prolonged detainment without trial. French Foreign Minister

Bernard Kouchner and Culture Minister Frédéric Mitterrand issued a joint statement. “We call for his immediate release and urge the Tehran authorities to respect the fundamental right of Iranians to freedom of expression and creativity,” it said, as reported by Reuters. Presiding over the jury at Cannes, director Tim Burton also supported Panahi’s release and spoke about the significance of free speech to the art of filmmaking. Asked at a news conference whether “Panahi should be released, Burton replied, “Yes, of course. All of us are for freedom of expression. We fight for that every day and in our lives.” In honor of Panahi, the 2010 Montreal World Film Festival will screen several films from the director’s oeuvre, including his most recent, “Offside,” the 2006 film about Iranian girls who must dress as boys to watch a football match, as the regime strictly prohibits women from entering sports stadiums. [Corrected: A previous version mistakenly called the movie, “Outside.”] Panahi is not the only Iranian filmmaker in jail. In January 2010, fellow director Mohammad Ali Shirzadi was arrested outside his home in Tehran. Similar to the raid faced by Panahi, Shirzadi’s computer, personal notebook and other belongings were confiscated. Shirzadi’s family believes his arrest could be connected to an interview he filmed between human-rights advocate Emadeddin Baghi and the late Ayatollah Hossein-Ali Montazeri two years ago.

A French lecturer charged with spying in Iran after last June’s disputed election will be allowed to leave the country onSunday, says her lawyer. Source: BBC News May 15, 2010


lotilde Reiss was sentenced to 10 years in jail at a hearing on Saturday, but this was commuted to a fine of $285,000 (£190,000), said her lawyer. The 25-year-old was accused of espionage and e-mailing photographs of anti-government protests. The French foreign ministry said it was “awaiting her return without delay”. She has been staying at the French embassy in the capital Tehran since she was bailed six weeks after her arrest in July last year. France frees IranianMs Reiss had been on a six-month teaching and research assignment in the central city of Isfahan. Her lawyer, Mohammad Ali Mahdavi, said he had paid the fine on her behalf and would collect her passport from the

authorities on Sunday. The BBC’s Hugh Schofield in the French capital says that with France at the forefront of efforts to punish Iran for its nuclear programme, there has been suspicion Ms Reiss was being held Clotilde Reiss had teaching in the city of Isfahan to put pressure on Paris. Last week, France freed an Iranian engineer whom court rejected the request last it detained for allegedly export- week and he was allowed reing electronic parts illegally to turn home. sell to Iran’s military. The US had wanted to extradite Majid Kakavand, but a French

Farzad Kamangar and four other political prisoners executed at Evin prison today Source: Committee of Human Rights Reporters May 9, 2010


arzad Kamangar and four other political prisoners executed at Evin prison today Committee of Human Rights Reporters - Farzad Kamangar, Ali Heydarian, Farhad Vakili, Shirin Alam Hooli and Mehdi Islamian were executed this morning, Sunday May 9, 2010. According to Fars News Agency, as announced by Tehran’s Prosecutor General, the [Iranian citizens] were executed at dawn today. Minutes after the announcement was made, Farzad Kamangar’s lawyer Khalil Bahramian stated that he has no information regarding the executions and he will be visiting the Prosecutor’s office today to receive more information. Farzad Kamangar was a Kurdish teacher arrested in 2007. During his months of incarceration, he was exposed to extreme mental and physical torture which he describes in a letter. He was sentenced to death in February 2008. In a letter written to the head of the judiciary on February 4, 2010, Kamangar requested a retrial. Mehdi Islamian was arrested on May 4, 2009 and spent six months in solitary confinement. His brother has also been executed. Shirin Alam Hooli was arrested May 2008 in Tehran and sentenced to death in November 2009. Ali Heydarian, Farhad Vakili, and Farzad Kamangar were imprisoned since 2006/2007.

Mahdieh Golroo Writes Letter in memory of executed prisoner Shirin Alam Hooli Source: RAHANA May 12, 2010

Imprisoned Right to Education Council member Mahdieh Golroo. Mahdieh Golroo, an imprisoned member of the Right to Education Council, has written a letter in memory of her cellmate executed political prisoner Shirin Alam Hooli. ou were with us and now separated from us without havyou are gone without us; ing time to say goodbye; as if like the scent of a flower. Where the noose was calling her name, did you go? hoping to see a glimmer of fear We spent Saturday night with- in her eagle eyes. But I know out Shirin. It was the most bitter well that Shirin’s courage was moment of our imprisonment. It ridiculing that stark Evin night was a dark and dreadful night. and the harshness of the noose. Every second seemed to last What a futile dream. The circle forever for us who longed to see of injustice continues to test our Shirin again. level of patience with the abrupt The telephone line in the wom- separation of Shirin from us. It en’s ward was disconnected was as if the gallow’s rope was ance defied the mountains, was from Saturday afternoon, which calling her name and hoped to lost to the noose. It was hard to only added to the distress. We see a glimpse of fear in her ea- believe. were all together in a room that gle eyes. But we know well that We heard on the two o’clock belonged only to us. Shirin liked her bravery had made a mock- news that Shirin had been exit like that. She had suffered ery of that night in Evin and the ecuted and thus will never remore than us and liked the se- noose. turn. Even though we had heard clusion, but she was the first Every second that passed was the news of execution before in to leave this room. That night, hard. We were waiting to hear memoirs and in the writings of even those who had been de- about Shirin. When they took history, we felt the bitterness of tained in Evin prison for a long her away, they used the excuse Shirin’s loss in every cell of our period of time, recalled their that her father’s name was writ- body. memories of the people who ten incorrectly in their records. That night was the culmination suddenly vanished in the dark It did not cross our minds that of all the nights in our lives. of night to reach the eternal light that moment would be the last We hoped for something that of freedom. We spent our time we would see her. Shirin’s en- prisoners of twenty years ago talking about the bitter memo- thusiasm for life and progress yearned for: an end to injustice ries of those whose comrades and the effort she put into her so that the future generation will were sent to the gallows. We studies resembled someone not have to go through this. admired the resistance of these who had just entered prison and Four days have passed since the women who tolerated the pres- was about to be released soon. tragedy. A black scarf that sigsures of their friends’ deaths to Oh, what a night it was. The pris- nifies the colour of our mournbring about better days for the oner count on Sunday morning ing lies on her bed. I sleep on next generations. felt like a heavy burden on our the prison cell’s floor. My cellAlas, the circle of injustice con- shoulders. By then, we were mates insist that I sleep on Shitinues, and it was not long be- sure that, once again, the life of rin’s bed. But I cannot take the fore our patience was called to a fighter and a lioness from the place of pottery teacher; she is task when Shirin was abruptly land of Kurdistan, whose resist- irreplaceable.


Iranian Progressive Youth