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Iran: Torturing and pressuring of political prisoners ramped up


On Saturday, May 14, around 100 prison guards in Gohardasht (Rajai Shahr) Prison viciously raided political prisoners’ Hall 21 in Ward 7 and destroyed prisoners’ belongings in an attempt to intensify psychological pressure and torture on the political prisoners.

Another scheme used to pressure political prisoners is an insulting and humiliating body search of the prisoner in front of other prisoners as they go to meet with their families.

On May 4, political prisoner Saleh Kohandel, a supporter of People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), forwent a visit by his family due to this antihuman treatment.

Prior, a number of political prisoners, including Saeid Massouri, Saeid Shirzad, Pirouz Mansouri, Reza Akbari-Monfared, Javad Fouladvand and Shahin Zoqitabar had refused to meet with their relatives due to the barbaric treatment of prisoners.

On May 4, Shahin Zoqitabar wrote a letter exposing pressures imposed by Gohardasht Prison head henchmen by the names of Mardani, Marvi and Shojaei and protested psychological torture and humiliating treatment of prisoners during their visits. On that same day, henchmen prevented Hassan Sadeqi, a political prisoner supportive of the PMOI, from meeting his son. They arrested his young son and conducted an insulting body search.

Massoud Arab Choubdar, another political prisoner in Gohardasht, in a letter to Mr. Ahmed Shaheed, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran, referred to the brutal tortures of prisoners by head henchmen such as Mardani, who is head of the prison; Amirian, deputy head of prison; Hassan Mahdifar, in charge of Ward 2; Goudarzi, in charge of the Quarantine Ward; Zolfali, commander of the prison guards; Mirzaei, deputy for follow ups; and head henchman Mardi, in charge of prison’s counterintelligence. He called for an investigation into the brutal violation of human rights in the Iranian regime’s prisons.

In another development, political prisoners of Gohardasht Prison wrote a letter to the UN Human Rights Council and complained about battering of prisoners and installing metal sheets over the windows of their cells. Prisoners of Gohardasht are also protesting the jamming devices installed in the prison’s yard.

Improvement on the situation of human rights in Iran, including the unconditional release of political prisoners, should be a precondition to all relations with the religious fascism ruling Iran.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
May 17, 2016