According to latest news from Human Rights Activists more then 400 people have been arrested in the past few days in relation to protests and turmoil because of rationing of gas.

For farsi speakers please feel free to visit the origional link and for non-Farsi speakers I have translated the article.



تا کنون 255 نفر از بازداشت شدگان حوادث اخیر تهران به زندان اوین منتقل شده اند که از این تعداد 100 نفر در اندرزگاه یک { قرنطینه } و 40 نفر به سالنهای 7 و 8 و 10 اندرزگاه 8 و 25 نفر به سالنهای 1و2و4 اندرزگاه 7 و 6 نفر به بازداشتگاه مخوف 209 اطلاعات و 84 نفر به بند 241 حفاظت قوه قضاییه منتقل شده اند.

As of today 255 of individuals arrested in regards to the recent protests in Tehran have been transferred to Evin prison. About 100 of these individuals are in Section 1 of the prison while 40 of them are in rooms 7, 8 and 10 in Section 8 of the Evin Prison. 25 people are in rooms 1,2,4 in section 7 and six people have been taken to s. 209 of the Evin prison. Also 241 people have been taken to revolutionary detention centers.

90 people were arrested last night and taken to Evin prisoner, however their names have not officially been registered with the prison, therefore their families have no way of knowing their whereabout, or can get in touch with them.

The 84 people in section 241 of the Evin prison are under terrible conditions, with 3 to 4 people occupaying a tiny cell and their bodies are completely bruised due to torture and physical abuse which they suffered before being taken to the cells. Among the people who have been arrested there are at least 6 women. Most of these individuals have been charged with insulting the Islamic Regime leaders, protesting and one individual has been charged with carrying a weapon.

The Human Rights Activists in Iran are extremely worried about the well being of these individuals and demand an immediate and fair look into their files.

Latest news from Human Rights Activists In Iran regarding another political prisoner Mostafa Daryanavard who is on his 5th day of hunger strike.

Mostafa Daryanavard a political prisoner in Iran who is on the 5th day of his hunger strike, was threatened by prison officials to break his hunger strike. Once the prison officials realized that their threats would not be successful, Davoud Baghviye the Evin prison warden for s. 7 of the prison further and repeatedly threatened him.

Mr. Daryanavard has stated that he will not break his hunger strike until such time where his demands are met. His major demand is the separation of political “crimes” v. non political crimes as well as the separation of political prisoners including himself from non political criminals.

Human Rights Activists in Iran condemn the treatment of Mr. Daryavand as well as the general detainment of political prisoners with common criminals as a from of psychological torture. At the same time the Human Rights Activists in Iran are extremely concerned about the health and well being of Mr. Mostafa Daryanavard.

فشار بر یک زندانی سیاسی
تاریخ : 86/4/۹

شماره : 86/28۸


به نام آزادی

زندانی سیاسی مصطفی در یانورد که پنجمین روز اعتصاب غذای خود را سپری می کند پس از آنکه اعمال فشار شورای زندان به ریاست مومنی معاونت زندان اوین در روز چهارشنبه مورخ 6/4/86 بر وی جهت شکستن اعتصاب غذا به نتیجه نرسید ظهر پنج شنبه توسط داود بالوایه ریاست اندرزگاه 7 برای شکستن اعتصاب غذای خود مورد تهدید قرار گرفت این در حالی است که نامبرده اعلام نموده است تا زمان احقاق حق خود یعنی رعایت اصل تفکیک جرایم و انتقال به نزد سایر زندانیان سیاسی به اعتصاب خود ادامه خواهد داد.

فعالان حقوق بشر در ایران ضمن محکوم نمودن عمل شنیع استفاده از تضاد عقاید به عنوان ابزار شکنجه روانی که مغایر با اصول کنوانسیون بین المللی منع شکنجه و رفتار غیر انسانی می باشد نسبت به سلامت این زندانی سیاسی ابراز نگرانی می نماید.

Human Rights Activists in Iran
Hra.Iran@Gmail.Com
www.Iran-Hra.blogfa.com



Khaled Hardani at Risk of Imminent Execution

Khaled Hardani is an Iranian Political Prisoner whose execution date has been set for July 4th 2007. Mr. Hardani was first arrested in January of 2001 when along with 11 members of his extended family he attempted to Hijack a 30 seater passenger air craft.
He wanted to attempt and force the plane to fly to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Reportedly the family was trying to escape the extreme poverty and discrimination they were facing as members of Iranian Arab Minorities.
Mr. Hardani along with two of his brother in laws were sentenced to death on charges of acts against national security (egdam aleyhe amniyat) and Moharebeh or enmity with god, not in relation to specific charges regarding the hijacking of the plane.
Khaled Hardani has been in prison for the past seven years under severe physical and psychological torture. He was originally sentenced to hang on January 19, 2005, however the head of Judiciary ordered a stay of execution, so that his lawyer could appeal the sentence.
Two months ago Mr. Hardani was transferred to Raji Shahr Prison which is one of the worst prisons in Iran. Numbers of his family members including his wife and small child have also been imprisoned in the past. On June 7th 2007 he was informed of his new date of execution which is set for July 4th , 2007. He has appealed to all human rights activists and organizations to help save his life.
Although we have become aware of his situation at the last minute, there is still time to try to help. We may not be able to stop the execution but we can certainly try. History has shown time and again that international pressure does work. Executions have been stopped, people have been saved from torture and death sentenced have been commuted thanks to international pressure.
Please write to your MP’s, contact different human rights organizations such as Amnesty International and Human Rights watch as well as write about him on your websites and blogs. Lets get the word out as fast and as wide as possible.

Sayeh Hassan

PUBLIC
AI Index: MDE 13/080/2007

UA 164/07

Death penalty / Torture

29 June 2007

IRAN

Davoud Abdollahi Moghadam (m), aged 40, army colonel



Colonel Davoud Abdollahi Moghadam was sentenced to death by a military court in February 2007, and is now facing execution. The charges against him are reported to have been politically motivated, and the court proceedings appear to have fallen short of international fair trial standards.


Davoud Abdollahi Moghadam was detained on or around 26 February 2006 and reportedly spent 11 months solitary confinement in Tehran's Evin Prison. The full details of the charges are not known, but they included spying and "transmitting state secrets to foreign interests". He reportedly "confessed" after ill-treatment and possibly torture.


He appealed against his sentence, and on around 11 June a higher military tribunal reportedly upheld the verdict. His case has still to go before the Supreme Court for a final appeal.


BACKGROUND INFORMATION



Torture has been used systematically in Iran for many years to extract information, and “confessions” are sometimes broadcast on television. Torture is facilitated by laws and procedures governing detention and interrogation which permit solitary confinement and prevent detainees having access to lawyers until the process of investigation is completed, and by the existence of parallel and sometimes informal institutions which run their own detention centres to which the judiciary has no access.

With virtually no warning, the Islamic Regime declared gas rationing in oil-rich Iran, sparking furious protests across the country — and Pajamas Media has video of the angry crowds setting gas stations on fire. ... For more on this article please visit:
http://pajamasmedia.com/2007/06/is_tehran_burning.php

Please visit http://sjk-news.blogspot.com/ for the latest pictures AND video clips of tonights protests and the gas stations on fire.

Big thank you for activists in Iran who have provided us with these pictures and videos.


Here is a wonderful article by my good frind Ardeshir Arian.

http://pajamasmedia.com/2007/06/iranian_regimes_heavyweight_gu.php


Iranian Regime's Heavyweight Gunned Down

PJM Barcelona
June 26, 2007 5:00 AM

The killing of a senior figure in Iran¢s regime, the third in two months, is again downplayed by the country¢s authorities. PJM special correspondent Ardeshir Arian explores the implications.

More.............





The Iranian government has decided to ration oil. The result?? Already 15 gas stations have been set on fire by people. You can see some pictures of this above.

Further Information on UA 113/07 (MDE 13/054/2007, 15 May 2007) Fear for safety/Fear of torture and ill-treatment

and new concern: Medical concern
IRAN

Students at Amir Kabir University, Tehran:

Bejaz Ahmad Qasabian (m)

Moqdad Khalilpour (m)

Pooyan Mahmoudian (m) (spelling corrected)

Majid Tavakkoli (m)

Majid Sheikhpour (m)

Babak Zamanian (m)

New names:

Ehsan Mansouri (m)

Abbas Hakimzadeh (m)

Ali Saberi (m)]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A further three students have been arrested for their alleged involvement in the publication of articles that “insult Islamic sanctities”. One student has been released on bail. All those in custody have reportedly denied any involvement in the publication of the articles, and have reportedly been tortured in an attempt to extract confessions.



Babak Zamanian was reportedly released at the beginning of June, on bail of 500 million Riyals (US$54,000). Three other students were reportedly arrested in late May and early June. All the eight students now in custody are reportedly in solitary confinement; they have had no access to their families or lawyers.

Ehsan Mansouri, the secretary of political affairs of the Islamic Student Association (ISA) activist body at Amir Kabir University in Tehran, was reportedly arrested at his home on 22 May. His family had reportedly received threatening phone calls for two weeks before he was arrested. Revolutionary Guards had visited the family home looking for Ehsan Masouri, and reportedly beat some of the family. It appears that Ehsan Mansouri was severely beaten while being taken to Section 209 in Evin Prison, breaking his shoulder.

Abbas Hakimzadeh and Ali Saberi, both ISA committee members at Amir Kabir University, were reportedly arrested at their homes in Mashhad, east of Tehran, on 6 June and taken to Section 209 of Evin Prison by plainclothes security forces. The security forces reportedly searched their houses after they had been arrested, confiscated their personal computers and CDs and told their families to contact the Revolutionary Court for more information about their situation. Abbas Hakimzadeh had recently undergone surgery on his spine; his doctor has reportedly said that he cannot sit or stand up for long periods, and any physical attack could be life-threatening.


BACKGROUND INFORMATION

The crisis at Amir Kabir University started with the publication of student newsletters carrying articles deemed insulting to Islam on 30 April.

These newsletters, bearing the names and logos of four student publications, were distributed throughout the campus. They contained three controversial articles and two caricatures deemed critical of the Iranian regime and insulting to Islam. This took place one week before the annual elections to the ISA.


One article questioned the infallibility of the Prophet Mohammad, the first Shiite Imam Ali and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Another criticised the government's crackdown on modern female clothing, and a third ridicules Islamic women’s attire.

The crack down on student activists in Amir Kabir University continues. Abbas Hakimzadeh a student activist in Amir Kabir University was arrested last night by the intelligence ministry agents. His computer and a number of other personal belongings were also confiscated. He is reportedly being kept in s. 209 of the Evin Prison.

Before his arrest Mr. Hakimzadeh had been suspended for two terms from Amir Kabir University for his political activities.

In the recent weeks 7 other student activists namely Ehsan Mansouri, Ahmad Ghasaban, Majid Sheykhpour, Majid Tavakoli, Maghdad Khalilpour and Pouyan Mahmoudiyan have been arrested and transferred to s. 209 of the Evin Prison.

I recently had the opportunity to read an article written by David Harris which promotes a military attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.

David Harris, Citizen Special
Published: Monday, June 04, 2007
When the United States strikes Iran -- as it will -- the result will be a disaster, but a disaster that cannot be avoided.

Today, Iran's radical Islamist military, security and intelligence machine reflects the extremism of its history and entrenched masters. It has made Iran an engine of global instability and menace. For Iran today is on the verge of grasping the nuclear club, even as it remains an ungovernable influence in the international community.

Iran's extremist and uncontrollable nature has been well defined through action.

(for the full text please click on the title of this post)

Following are comments which I sent for him.

Dear Mr. Harris,

I had the opportunity to read your article in the Ottawa Citizen and had a few comments that I felt I should share with you.

I certainly agree with almost everything you said regarding the brutality of the Islamic Regime and its danger towards the Iranian People as well as the global community as a whole. However I strongly oppose a military attack even on the nuclear sites for a number of reasons. As you may very well know most of these nuclear sites are underground and in heavily populated areas and a military attack would only cause the death of many civilians, with no guarantee that these facilities may have been destroyed.

Second In your article you only spoke about the negative effect a military action in Iran would have on the West (ie the suicide bombings) but you failed to mention the effect it would have on the Iranian people. After the 8 year war with Iraq our countrys infrastructure was destroyed and we lost close to 1 million people, I strongly believe I speak for most Iranians when I say we do not need another war.

Further I have no doubt that the IRI would welcome a military attack since it would only serve to increase its popularity and at the same time create hatred towards the west, which is exactly what they want. Right now there is a very strong pro-democratic movement going on in Iran (although we do not hear about it much in the west) and that is the only viable solution to the dangers of the Islamic Regime.

I was dissapointed to see you did not mention anything regarding the strong anti regime movement inside Iran and focused only on a military invasion, which in the long term will not only have terrible consequences for Iranians but for the West as well.

As someone who is directly in touch with student and human rights activists in Iran I can assure you that Iranian people want change, and they are risking their very lives trying to achieve it. They need the support of Western Governments in order to accomplish this hard task, not a military invasion.

I find it troubling that Canada allows for many high ranked IRI officials to come to Canada and invest millions of dollars, and then they talk about a military attack on Iran. Why not atleast try helping the democratic movement in Iran first, by stopping to support the IRI officials, and if that does not work, then move towards a more drastic option?

Those are just a few thoughts I had which I wanted to share.

All the best

Sayeh


Tohid=Torture
Interview with a former prisoner




Maryam Maktoob
May 31, 2007
iranian.com

After being incarcerated in one of the world’s most notorious prisons, Kianoosh Sanjari, a human rights activist, finally escaped Iran’s oppressive regime. Now hiding in Iraq, waiting for Amnesty International to bring him to The United States, Kianoosh took the time to have an extensive interview with me. Kianoosh gives detailed accounts of his time in Evin Prison, and what he hopes to accomplish now that he is free. Since Kianoosh does not speak fluent English, Roya Teimouri, a fellow human rights activist living in Los Angeles, took the time to act as a translator for our interview.

Maryam: What happened the first time you were incarcerated, and for what were you incarcerated for?

Kianoosh: I was a student at the University of Tehran. The first time [I was arrested] was for being involved in a demonstration. I wasn’t a political activist at the time. I was 17 years old and in my second year of university studying graphic design. I was being charged for supposedly being involved in a demonstration that was against the Iranian government. I was beaten up really badly before being taken to Tehran’s Evin Prison. The officials blindfolded us and threw us into police vans to and from the different destinations. Soon after, we were transferred to a place called Tohid for interrogation. We were taken secretly in and out of facilities blindfolded so we wouldn’t know where we were going. The officials would often play psychological games with us so we would lose our sense of direction.

Maryam: What is Tohid?

Kianoosh: Tohid is a place where the Iranian government officials take anyone they arrest. It is also the place where they conduct most of their torture. I was there for two months. Other political activists such as Ahmad Batebi, and Mohammad Akbari have also been tortured at Tohid.

Maryam: Describe Tohid and your experience in there.

Kianoosh: When I was taken to Tohid, the officials blindfolded a group of us. We had to put our hand on the shoulder of the person in front of us so we wouldn’t fall. Each prisoner is kept in a cell that is 1 ½ by 2 meters. My first time at Tohid, I was stuck in that small cell for three weeks. Tohid has underground places where the prison officials conduct torture and lash people at the bottom of their feet. The people who conduct the torturing have permission from the high court to perform any torture they want. One form of torture they conducted consisted of taking us into a courtyard blindfolded. They would make us sit in the courtyard, oblivious to what is happening, and they would suddenly play loud sounds of people being beaten and tortured. After a long while, the prison guards would angrily ask us, “Is this the kind of freedom you want? If so, then this is what you get!”

Another form of torture they used on prisoners was only allowing them to use the restrooms three times a day. The problem with this is that prisoners who get tortured develop full bladder problems, and therefore need to use the restroom more often than three times. It would be nothing out of the ordinary for prisoners to be forced to pee in their own pants.

Maryam: Does this type of torture still occur at Tohid?

Kianoosh: Recently they closed down Tohid and they have turned it into a museum. The “museum” only displays pictures of people who were tortured during the Shah’s regime, and fails to recognize the torture of the political prisoners of the current regime.

Maryam: Did this type of torture also occur in Tehran’s Evin prison?

Kianoosh: The same kinds of torture techniques still occur in all of these prisons. The same things are happening to all of the political prisoners.

Roya: When Tohid was opened, it was ruled under the military force. This is the worst kind of place to be. It is the military forces who are out on the streets of Iran taking innocent people in and falsely accusing them of committing crimes against the Iranian government.

Kianoosh: We experienced all different sections and all different types of prisons.

I think that Tohid was the worst out of all them, but the same manners are happening in all sections of the prison. When somebody was taken to Tohid, the families were not notified of the arrests for months. They could rot in the prison cells and no one would know what happened to them.

Maryam: Describe your time in solitary confinement.

Kianoosh: There were nights when I would stand by the iron bars. I would listen to the women being tortured. They were crying and screaming. I would hear the people who were torturing them, yelling, and screaming at the women.

Maryam: Describe your last prison experience before you fled the country.

Kianoosh: I was taken to section 209 of Evin Prison, which is the solitary confinement area. My family wasn’t notified of my whereabouts. I was in solitary confinement for an entire month before my family was able to contact me.

Maryam: What reason did the officials give you or your family for imprisoning you?

Kianoosh: Accusations that are given to all political prisoners are the same: You are advertising against the government; you are calling the officials cheaters or liars, or you are probably involved with people outside Iran. The government officials keep you in prison for months if you commit any of the aforementioned crimes.

Maryam: Did you continue with activism work after you were released from prison?

Kianoosh: After I was released, I decided to write all my memories and experiences of prison in the form of a web blog. I wrote about the experiences of my political prisoner friends whom I met in jail. I even wrote detailed accounts of Ahmad Batebi’s physician who was also arrested. While I was writing web blogs, I wasn’t aware that the Iranian government was planning my arrest behind my back.

Maryam: They arrested you once again?

Kianoosh: During this time, an Ayatollah in Iran who is in favour of secularism started a movement against the Iranian government. He felt they were using Islam against the people. One night, while he was having a meeting with his followers, military guards surrounded his house. By chance I went over to his house that night to get information for my web blog. As soon as I arrived, I was arrested. I was once again returned to solitary confinement. A man came into my cell and started slapping my face and interrogating me. When I asked him why he was hitting me, he slapped me harder and proceeded to ask the same questions. The next day, three or four men with turbans, most likely Ayatollahs, came into my prison cell and started accusing me of hitting and abusing innocent people on the streets. They charged me with many crimes that I never committed. For example, they accused me of throwing a hand made arm into a crowd during a protest. I was also accused of getting paid to be a web blogger and I was supposedly attempting to unite other web bloggers around the world. This is one way for the government to show the people in Iran that activists like me are doing the wrong thing. The officials would interrogate us until they could get a lie out of us, or until their torture got too exhausting. Their ultimate goal was to get us to falsely admit to the accusations against us. The government officials want the Iranian people to think that we political activists are fed financially from different groups and oppositions outside of Iran. They wanted us to make the Iranian regime look good and everything else to look bad. After ten months in solitary confinement, I was able to have my mom visit me. They allowed her to visit, so they can put pressure and instill fear in me so I can falsely confess. After not being successful in their interrogation, I was placed back in solitary confinement for two more months. I have served two full years in prison since I was 17 years old. Ten months of my prison time was spent in solitary confinement.

Maryam: How did you get released out of prison this time?

Kianoosh: I served my time in prison and I was released. The government officials thought that I had learned my lesson and would ultimately stop being involved in activism work. Instead, I started giving interviews and began writing more of my accounts on my web blog. One day, one of the high officials called my house and started harassing me. Soon after I was called into the court and the officials requested for me to start talking about that Ayatollah who turned against the government. They wanted me to state that he was mentally insane, but I denied cooperation with the officials.

Maryam: What was the breaking point that made you decide to flee Iran?

Kianoosh: I never thought that one day I would be forced to leave my county. After I discussed leaving Iran with my friends, they realized that was the best decision I could make. I had no better choice but to leave Iran; my life was in danger, and I got continuously harassed by government officials after being released from prison. I had to leave everything behind, and I am very sorry that I had to be forced to make that decision. The hardest part was leaving my mom and younger brother behind.

Maryam: How does your mother feel about your involvement in activism?

Kianoosh: Of course my mother was very disturbed by the entire situation. She spent her days begging for my freedom. For instance, in 2002, I was the spokesperson for the United Students movement. Iran gave me five years of prison time for this, but my mom begged so much for my sentence to be decreased that the government reduced it to one year. My mom has been a big support to me. Every time I was arrested, the officials would call my house and talk to my mother. They would warn her against talking to the media and not telling anyone about my situation in the prison, but she still did what she had to do. When the media contacted her, she would cry and talk about the situation she was put in. The last time I was arrested, the government officials called the house and she cried and begged to see me. She just wanted to make sure I was alive. She begged to see me alive for one second. She has been a big support to me.

Maryam: Is anyone in Iran safe?

Kianoosh: No one in Iran has any safety. For example, there are poor family members who have political gatherings in front of Amnesty International in Iran, and soon after they all get arrested. Even if someone is protesting a simple pay hike at their job, they will get immediately arrested. Even if a parent is with his/her kids; everyone present will be arrested. There is a man by the name of Omid Ahbassgolinejad who has two daughters and a wife. One day he and his family were standing outside of Amnesty International, at which point they were all arrested, including his three and four year old children. As this example demonstrates, no one, even if you are a young child has any safety in Iran.

Maryam: Who have been the biggest supporters of the political prisoners?

Kianoosh: Families of the political prisoners have been the biggest supporters. In Ahmad Batebi’s case, his wife informed the world what was happening to her husband. She was also arrested herself for being too outspoken. The officials kidnapped her for defending her husband.

Maryam: What’s next for you now that you have fled Iran?

Kianoosh: Right now I have been going daily to the United Nations office in Iraq. As you know, Iraq is not a safe place right now. I wish to come to America soon and fight against the Iranian government.

Maryam: How do you plan to fight against the Iranian government in America?

Kianoosh: I feel that the actual fight against the government of Iran is in Iran. That is why I am sorry to have left the country. Now that I am out, and there is more freedom of speech, I hope to be the voice of the people of Iran. My friends in Iran have said to me that I can be their voice outside of Iran and get their messages across. In a free world, people need to know what is going on to the people in Iran. It is our duty to tell people what kind of government is ruling Iran. If you look at what is going on in Iran, there are different movements all the time. The outside world needs to support the movements that are occurring in Iran. They need to go stand beside the people’s movements. The people of Iran need mental support more than anything. The people of Iran can arrange the rest on their own. The movement is happening inside Iran as we speak. We need to help the Iranian people push it forward.

Maryam: What can we do as citizens of Western countries to help the Iranian people with their movement?

Kianoosh: Countries need to stop doing negotiations with Iran. People in Canada can urge their governments to stop doing negotiations with Iran. If you follow the news, you will see what they are doing to the women and men in Iran. The citizens are not allowed to even dress the way that they want. The new generation of Iran is desperate for someone or another country to come and release them from the torturous hands of the Ayatollahs. The people don’t have power because the government is ruling them with fear. The Iranian government doesn’t care about human rights organizations.

Maryam: How can Iranians in the West get involved in political activism work?

Kianoosh: There are not many Iranian freedom fighters outside of Iran. If an Iranian living in the West wants to help, they should go stand outside of Embassy of Iran or Amnesty International and protest. We don’t see that often. If we have 100,000 Iranians get together, we could make a difference; even if it’s a small difference. Everyone should know about the political prisoners and what they are going through. I hope that people who are not freedom fighters can wake up from the dream that they are in and think about their home country. Unfortunately what I see for the people living outside of Iran is that they left Iran to live under different circumstances. They forgot the poverty, the killings and the prisons. They forgot about the torture. Instead they have been taken by the beauty of the West and have forgotten where they came from. It is our duty as human rights activists to inform these people of what is going on in Iran.

Maryam: Do you have any expectations of the Iranian youth living in Western countries?

Kianoosh: Because I haven’t come to the West yet, I have no recognition of the youth here. I think that if we want to reach the youth, we have to speak their language. We need to try to communicate with them and make them realize it will be to everyone’s benefit to overthrow the Iranian government. I believe that the media can play a very important part in this as well. The youth can start a new revolution through the media. It is very difficult at the same time, because there are Iranian stations in Los Angeles who are bought from the Iranian government. Anytime you see advertisements from Iran on the satellite system, chances are that station is being bought by the Iranian government.

It has been a few days where my thoughts keep going back to the Prisons of Iran, where so many young freedom fighters are imprisoned. I was thinking about how we tend to write about them, write to them for a brief period of time and then they go in the back of our mind, and a few weeks later we seem to forget, or at the least fighting for them seems to lose its urgency. For example about a month ago I wrote a number of posts on Behrouz Javid Tehrani, wrote letters on his behlaf etc.. (and hopefully others did as well), then we forgot... Unfortunately Behrouz is still in prison, he still needs our help and he will continue to need help until and if he is released. This post is mostly to remind myself and all my readers that our friends are still in Prison, lets not forget about them and at the very least keep them in our thoughts and in our hearts.

Behrouz Javid Tehrani is still in Gohardasht prison.
Keyvan Rafaei is in Evin Prison
Hossein Forouhideh if facing imminent execution
Iraj Naji has been held in solitary confinement since October 2006.
Mohammad Hassan Fallahiya is in Evin Prison

A few days ago I recieved a very well thought out and articulate email regarding the protests that took place in Waterloo. I think the comments in this email can be extremely helpful for the organizers for future protests as well as for anyone that is involved in the pro-democracy movement. Below is the text of the email, I have removed the name for privacy reasons.



Hi Sayeh, having many Iranian friends I tend to follow news items relating to the country. I saw your posting on the waterloo conference; being a member of a Mennonite Church, I have at least one other reason to be interested. Many of us aware of this meeting felt that MCC was acting out of ignorance. I wonder if they realise that the IKI is not the best group with which to start discussions about peace...


I did a search for these folks who were protesting and could not identify any particular groups. The name Rahmen Nejati does not come up in Google. My impression from the news item was that they didn't seem to have a distinct spokesman, and that while the protest began well, it degenerated and they ended up not getting the exposure they wanted. This would have been a good forum to air objections to the Regime.


Had they been able to negotiate for some up-front time they could have articulated some specific grievances that the Khomeini Institute guys would have to answer. It would bring to light some of these things, of which the North American public is quite ignorant.


They could still get some mileage by having some competent spokespersons compose some letters to the editor to give their side of the story, perhaps offer an op-ed explaining the situation in Iran and why the Khomeini Institute does not represent peaceful interests -- address the topic of the conference and make it clear that the position is well-thought out and fact-based, not just a political disagreement.


If the two later planned discussions are still going to take place it is likely that preemptive action will be taken to prevent a protest of the similar sort from disrupting the proceedings. The protesters could be pro-active about this and begin ahead of time to negotiate for equal time in the dialogue -- perhaps make it a "trialogue". the IKI folks will, of course, talk in glowing terms of their commitment to peace, but a well-documented and articulated counterpresentation would make their hypocrisy clear. The numbers (50 versus 5000, as you observe) are less important than the actual content and tone of their presentation.


I'm sending these thoughts to you as I figure you are a likely person to pass them on to the protesters. I wish them well, and I pray for the people of Iran.

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