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July 22, 2005

Dutch diplomat sheds light on notorious Iran prison

Topics: Iran

I've been getting emails from Iranians for quite a long time, about the routine and systematic torture being conducted in Iranian prisons. I'm glad to see that the matter is finally getting more exposure.

(Iran Focus) A diplomat from the Dutch embassy in Tehran has revealed that political prisoners locked up in one of Iran's most notorious prisons were being systematically tortured and deliberately harassed for their opposition to Iran's clerical leadership.

(...) The report by Loes Bijnen, which first appeared in a Persian-language website, provides a shocking account of the treatment of political prisoners in Rajai-Shahr Prison in Karaj, a major city west of the Iranian capital. The website of the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Tehran identifies Ms. Bijnen as a second secretary in the embassy's political department.

(...) "Going to [Rajai-Shahr Prison in] Karaj is a harsh punishment. When someone sets foot there, all humanity disappears

(...) The report surfaced a day after the ultra-conservative daily Ressalat published a letter from two former prisoners in Rajai-Shahr Prison, who thanked Prison Governor Ali Haji-Kazem for his "excellent treatment" of prisoners. The official news agency, IRNA, put out an interview with Haji-Kazem, in which he described the prison as "a model educational centre".

(...) Ms. Bijnen noted in her report that "mysterious deaths" were common in Rajai-Shahr Prison. She mentioned a number of prisoners were treated with singular brutality.

(...) Arjang Davoudi, a 49-year-old engineer, teacher, and poet was sentenced to 15 years in prison and 70 lashes for aiding foreign journalists secretly produce a documentary about the Canadian-Iranian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi, who died under torture in Evin Prison in the summer of 2003.

(...) Bina Darabzand, a 46-year-old man, was sentenced to three and a half years in prison for "demonstrating illegally" outside the United Nations building in Tehran in August 2004.

(...) Mehrdad Lohrasbi, a bookseller, received a 15-year prison sentence for taking part in the July 1999 student-led anti-government protests in the Iranian capital. Bijnen reported that he was beaten systematically by prison guards.

(...) Amir Saran, a political activist, ... had been sentenced to eight years in prison. She wrote that Saran had gone on hunger strike in protest to the June 2005 presidential elections, calling it a sham.

"Why have Western newspapers remained silent in the face of this calamity?" the Dutch diplomat wrote.

"Why do they ignore the unbearable pain of countless people in Iran's prisons yet at the same time write plenty of news about Iran's nuclear project?"

Read more ...

We all no the answer to the last question. Because the MSM has been too busy writing about korans, toilets, and GITMO. Not to mention the fact that Iran going nuclear is a potential death sentence for civilization. Of course, the media could surely write about both.

Posted by Hyscience at July 22, 2005 12:58 PM

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