We highly appreciate the active participation of NGOs, in the interactive dialogues of Item 3 from the agenda. However, due to the lack of available allocated time, Sudwind were unable to contribute to the interactive dialogues with the WG on arbitrary detention, and the IE on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order. Therefore, we will base our statement on these crucial issues.
There is a large scope of arbitrary deprivation of liberty in Iran, with the number of cases continuously rising. Many of the prisoners of conscience who are held captive in Iran due to their stated criticisms against the Iranian authorities, or participation in peaceful protests are charged with similar accusations as they have continued to be actively criticizing several human rights violations in jail. This is against both international and domestic basic laws.
Arjang Davoodi, Rasoul Bodaghi and Bahareh Hedayat are only 3 examples of such prisoners of conscience who have received the extra sentences when already in jail. Arjang Davoodi was accused of waging war against God and was sentenced to death penalty while serving his 10 years of sentence. He is currently waiting for the appeal court’s decision.
Rasul Bodaghi teacher and a member of the teachers union who expected to be freed from prison after serving his 6 years sentence based on the accusations of spreading propaganda against the system and gathering and colluding against national security, is sentenced to another 3 years without any accusations being announced until now.
Bahareh Hedayat a women and student rights activist whose 7 and a half years sentence was over has to serve another 2 years.
Mr President Iran must stop depriving the liberty of the civil society activists, human rights activists, journalists and bloggers, religious and ethnic minorities now and free all prisoners of conscience.