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Wednesday 27 June 2012
Narges Mohamadi, the Deputy Head of the Defenders for Human Rights Center (DHRC) and the Executive Chairwoman of the National Peace Council, recently wrote a letter to Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi, the Tehran Prosecutor. While emphasizing her illegal detention in Zanjan prison, Narges Mohammadi stresses that if she encounters a traumatic incident while detained, she holds Iranian officials solely responsible. The imprisoned human rights defender is in dire physical health. Physicians have indicated that she is unable to withstand prison conditions and must be hospitalized.
Translation by Persian Banoo
In the name of God.
Mr. Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi, the Prosecutor of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court
I hereby inform you that, I, Narges Mohammadi, was arrested at my home on April 21, 2012 by Ministry of Intelligence agents while I was out on bail for my six-year prison sentence. From April 21 to May 16, I was incarcerated in the high security ward 209 in Evin prison [ward 209 is run by the Ministry of Intelligence]. During this time I was once transferred to the women’s general Ward for a 24-hour period then returned to ward 209. I wrote to you three times during that time. I protested [because I was held in ward 209] even though I had already been sentenced. I had asked for my transfer to the women’s general ward. In a meeting I had with Mr. Reshtehahmadi on May 8, I urged that I be transferred to the women’s ward. I also presented to him a letter signed by me requesting my transfer to the women’s ward. I have always stressed that incarcerating a person in ward 209 who has already been issued a prison sentence is illegal. According to the law, I should be transferred to the general ward.
I have never, neither verbally nor in writing, requested to be transferred to any other city, certainly not Zanjan. [However,] on May 16 at 6:00am, [Iranian regime] agents woke me up, blindfolded and handcuffed me, and placed me in a car. I was unaware of what was going on during the long distance of travel, [but] I realized that we had left Tehran. It was when I entered a court in Zanjan that I realized where I was.
[Iranian authorities] stated that [I] had personally requested the transfer to Zanjan. This is a complete fabrication. It was claimed that, due to [my] illness, [I] requested to be transferred to Zanjan. This is also completely false.
I hereby inform you:
1- I strongly protest my illegal transfer to the women’s ward in Zanjan prison, which holds criminals. I request you to take the necessary actions for my immediate transfer to the women’s ward in Evin prison, which holds non-criminal inmates.
2- It should be noted that I entered Evin prison on June 10, 2010 completely healthy. On July 1, 2010, I was transferred to a hospital suffering from serious neurological and psychological disorders.
After intensive medical care and consuming 18 pills a day, I was discharged from the hospital. I am currently on 11 pills a day, but since my latest arrest, the medications do not help my illness. My condition has worsened.
I am currently incarcerated among fifty female murderers, death row prisoners (for narcotic charges), prisoners charges with immorality, and even women with psychological disorders. Since I have entered this ward, I have experienced nothing but anxiety, nervousness, and fear; which has exacerbated my illness moment by moment. My medical records and the opinion of my treating physicians suggest that my illness is directly linked to the escalation of my anxiety. Despite this, since entering this ward I have encountered horrible conditions that I am unable to describe or write about. Placing me under such stress is equivalent to feeding me cups of poison that destroy me moment by moment. Such treatment toward me is in fact causing my slow death. The responsibility lies with the Iranian authorities.
The respected officials, who are in possession of my medical records, know very well that keeping me in the stressful conditions of prison, especially where criminals (murderers, death row inmates, drug traffickers, etc…) are held, is equivalent to intentional murder. The officials will be directly responsible.
I certainly hope that [my situation] will turn out to be like the cases of Haleh Sahabi and Hoda Saber where the [Iranian authorities] announced the cause of their deaths to be the hot weather or a hunger strike!
If another incident takes place, even if it seems it was due to natural causes, I hereby proclaim that the exacerbation of my illness or the occurrence of any traumatic situation was deliberate [by the Iranian authorities].
3- My legal residence, and more importantly, the location of my doctors and specialists (neurologist, psychologist, pulmonary, heart and gynecologist) are all in Tehran. Because I am under their care and treatment, I must be seen by them at least every two months because they possess all my medical records and I am under their care and treatment. My illegal transfer to Zanjan has denied me such medical care and treatment. The complications and damages arising from this action would be irreversible. It is an inhumane act.
4- My 5-year-old children, Ali and Kiana, do not reside in Zanjan and must inevitably travel a long distance and many hours to visit their mother. This is very difficult for Mrs. Rahmani (my mother-in-law) and for my small children. Perhaps it will be impossible [for them to visit me] in the heat of summer and the cold of winter. This is putting severe psychological stress on me, an imprisoned mother.
The Honorable Mr. Prosecutor, the above mentioned conditions plus the issues that I hope to share with Your Excellency in person, are the plight of a mother and a fellow citizen who writes to you and looks forward to justice.
I hope that at the earliest possible time I can see a treating physician, before my health deteriorates even more. I also hope I will be afforded my freedom.
With much gratitude,