Friday, March 5, 2021
Home Iran News Now Iran Human Rights Statement by 24 Members of the European Parliament on Human Rights in...

Statement by 24 Members of the European Parliament on Human Rights in Iran Calling for the Immediate Release of Political Prisoner Saeid Sangar

Twenty-four members of the European Parliament cosigned a statement on the initiative of the European Parliament’s Friends of a Free Iran (FoFI) about the alarming human rights situation in Iran, following a recent surge of executions and mass arrests across the country since December 2020. The following is the Press release and the full statement signed by the European Parliamentarians.

Press Release

24 members of the European Parliament co-signed an urgent Statement on Human Rights in Iran calling for the immediate release of Political Prisoner Saeid Sangar

Brussels, Belgium, February 12, 2021 – Twenty-four members of the European Parliament cosigned a statement on the initiative of the European Parliament’s Friends of a Free Iran (FoFI) about the alarming human rights situation in Iran, following a recent surge of executions and mass arrests across the country since December 2020.

The statement on human rights in Iran focused on the particular urgent case to save life of political prisoner Saeid Sangar. The statement reads, “One such urgent case is the case of political prisoner Saeid Sangar from city of Piranshahr. The Iranian Judiciary recently sentenced him to another 11 months in prison in Urmia after he finished serving his 20-year prison sentence for supporting the Iranian pro-democracy opposition, the People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI/MEK), without any temporary release.”

Mr. Sangar, 47 is one of Iran’s longest imprisoned political activists and was arrested in 2000 and sentenced to 18 years in prison on charges of “moharebeh” (waging war against God) and “contacts with the MEK”. He was interrogated and tortured in solitary confinement in Evin Prison for three years and reportedly subjected to 13 mock executions.

The MEPs also noted, “The authorities are now particularly targeting political prisoners and those arrested in connection with the nationwide protests in November 2019 subjecting them to severe torture and other ill-treatment in prisons including floggings, mock executions, waterboarding, and sexual violence and denying them life-saving medical care.”

In a statement MEPs also drew attention to the Amnesty International report, “Trampling Humanity”, issued on September 2, 2020, which stated that, “Instead of investigating allegations of enforced disappearance, torture and other ill-treatment and other crimes against detainees, Iranian prosecutors became complicit in the campaign of repression by bringing national security charges against hundreds of people solely for exercising their rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly, while judges doled out guilty verdicts on the basis of torture-tainted ‘confessions’.”

Referring to the fact that the regime in Iran is ignoring its international obligations and violating international human rights law and the right to life and freedom of expression of the Iranian people, MEPs stressed that, “Iran’s Judiciary led by Ebrahim Raisi, known for his role in the massacre of thousands of political prisoners in 1988, is responsible for these atrocities and cannot be expected to hold the perpetrators to account.”

To Stop Executions in Iran Permanently, World Should Hold Mullahs to Account for 1988 Massacre

MEPs also pointed out that Iranian activists and Amnesty International have repeatedly called for international action to stop the authorities’ bloodshed and human rights abuses in Iran and end the impunity regime officials enjoy.

The MEPs who co-signed the statement called on the EU Foreign Policy Chief, Josep Borrell, and the EU members’ states and their Foreign Ministers to:

  • Demand for the immediately release of Mr. Saied Sangar as well as other political prisoners and those detained in connection to popular protests in Iran;
  • Send a delegation to Iran to visit the prisons, meet and talk with political prisoners and detained protesters;
  • Make any relations with Iran and the regime contingent upon full respect for human rights in Iran;
  • Use the Human Rights Sanctions Mechanism, known as Magnitsky Act, to impose targeted measures against Iranian officials, who have committed serious human rights violations, as demanded by the European Parliament resolutions on Iran in the last two years, including Ebrahim Raisi, and his predecessor, Sadeq Larijani.

Copies of the letter were also sent to the heads of the EU Member’s States and Foreign Ministers of the EU Member′s States.

Gianna Gancia
MEP from Italy

Statement on Human Rights in Iran
Urgent Case of Political Prisoner Saeid Sangar

January 26, 2021

We are deeply concerned about the alarming human rights situation in Iran, especially a recent surge of executions and mass arrests across the country since December 2020.

The authorities are now particularly targeting political prisoners and those arrested in connection with the nationwide protests in November 2019 subjecting them to severe torture and other ill-treatment in prisons including floggings, mock executions, waterboarding, and sexual violence and denying them life-saving medical care.

Amnesty International mentioned in their September 2, 2020 report, “Instead of investigating allegations of enforced disappearance, torture and other ill-treatment and other crimes against detainees, Iranian prosecutors became complicit in the campaign of repression by bringing national security charges against hundreds of people solely for exercising their rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly, while judges doled out guilty verdicts on the basis of torture-tainted ‘confessions’.”

One such urgent case is the case of political prisoner Saeid Sangar from city of Piranshahr. The Iranian Judiciary recently sentenced him to another 11 months in prison in Urmia after he finished serving his 20year prison sentence for supporting the Iranian pro-democracy opposition, the People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI/MEK), without any temporary release.

Mr. Sangar, 47 is one of Iran’s longest imprisoned political activists and was arrested in 2000 and sentenced to 18 years in prison on charges of “moharebeh” (waging war against God) and “contacts with the MEK”. He was interrogated and tortured in solitary confinement in Evin Prison for three years and reportedly subjected to 13 mock executions.

The regime in Iran is ignoring its international obligations and violating international human rights law and the right to life and freedom of expression of the Iranian people.

Iran’s Judiciary led by Ebrahim Raisi, known for his role in the massacre of thousands of political prisoners in 1988, is responsible for these atrocities and cannot be expected to hold the perpetrators to account.

Iranian activists and Amnesty International have repeatedly called for international action to stop the authorities’ bloodshed and human rights abuses in Iran and end the impunity regime officials enjoy.

The European Parliament’s Friends of a Free Iran (FOFI), supports this call and urges the EU Foreign Policy Chief, Josep Borrell, and the EU members states and their Foreign Ministers to:

  • Demand the immediate release of Mr. Saied Sangar as well as other political prisoners and those detained in connection to popular protests in Iran;
  • Send a delegation to Iran to visit the prisons and meet with political prisoners and detained protesters
  • Make any relations with Iran and the regime contingent upon verifiable improvements of human rights situation in Iran;
  • Use the Human Rights Sanctions Mechanism, known as Magnitsky Act, to impose targeted measures against Iranian officials who have committed serious human rights violations, as demanded by the European Parliament resolutions on Iran in the last two years, including Ebrahim Raisi, like his predecessor, Sadeq Larijani.