Tuesday, 5 February 2008

IMHRO: Further information on Mohammad Sadigh Kabodwand

Iranian minorities’ Human Right Organisation (IMHRO)



The founder of a Kurdistan Human Rights Organisation, who was arrested seven months ago, has been denied access to his solicitor. Mr Mohammad Sadigh Kabodwand, the creator of the banned newspaper Payame Kurdistan, was arrested seven months ago in his place of work. He has been denied his right to see his solicitor of choice.

The court rejected [the lawyers he suggested]; Shirin Ebadi, Mohammad Sayf and Mrs Nasrin Sotodeh. However, Mrs Sotodeh continues to represent him,” his daughter has told IMHRO.

“For one and half months we did not knew where he was. For 6 months they kept him in solitary confinement. It is about 10 days since they moved him to the general section. During 6 months in solitary confinement, he began having difficulty breathing and he had pain in his kidneys.”

During his time spent in prison the doctor only visited Mr Mohammad Sadigh Kabodwand once. Kabodwand has been charged with acts against national security and destabilisation of the country. However, it is not clear at what stage his case is at.

Before his arrest, Mr Mohammad Sadigh Kabodwand was a human rights activist. He openly criticised the practice of stoning offenders and published news of human rights abuses in Kurdistan. His Human Rights group highlighted cases of increasing suicide rates in young Kurdish women as a result of depression.

The case of Mr Kabodwand clearly shows that political activists in Iran are being targeted by the government.

In Iran soon after the arrest of an activist, the government freezes their bank accounts. This denies them the ability to pay for lawyers or pay for the fee required for bail.

The Kurdish minority make up 6 million of the population in Iran. Large numbers of Kurds live in the West Midlands, North West and North East of Iran.

Iranian Kurds are denied social and political rights. Various human rights
Organisations have reported that hundreds of Kurds are unjustly imprisoned, some having been so for years. Kurdistan areas are the only areas in Iran that have bases for security forces situated near most villages. The government has also deliberately diverted investment from Kurdish area.

In recent years the situation in Kurdistan has worsened. Papers and magazines that condemn the actions of the government have been closed down. Recent examples of such publications include Manisht, Payame Mardom Kurdistan, Heh Naran, Rojeh Lat, Asu, Asdhti and Rasan.

Take action

Write to Iranian government and call on them for immediate release of
Mohammad Sadigh Kabodwand.

Supreme leader of Iran
Sayyed Ali Khamenei
E-mail via web site

Iranian president
Mahmud Ahmadinejad
E-mail via web site

Head of the Judiciary
Ayatollah Mahmud Hashemi Shahroudi
Howzeh Riyasat-e Qoveh Qazaiyeh / Office of the Head of the Judiciary
Pasteur St., Vali Asr Ave., south of Serah-e Jomhouri, Tehran 1316814737,
Islamic Republic of Iran

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