“Free Behnam “campaign
The campaign in support of labour activist, Behnam Ebrahimzadeh
Behnam Ebrahimzadeh is a political prisoner who was sentenced to 5 years in prison in Iran for being a labour’s and children’s rights activist. He has been on a hunger strike since December 3, 2014 in Rajai-Shahr prison in order to protest his transfer to Ward 1—a section where violent and dangerous prisoners are housed. He has stated that he will end his hunger strike as soon as he is returned to the Ward 12; the political prisoners ward.
On December 19, 2014, Mr. Ebrahimzadeh commenced a dry hunger strike. Two days later on December 21st he fell unconscious and was thus transferred to the hospital infirmary. However, the prisoner would not consent to intravenous treatment until the authorities promised to look into his transfer. After he agreed to treatment he stated that he would continue his hunger strike until he is removed from the violent prisoners Ward and returned to Ward 12.
On December 27th he was transferred to Ward 2 in Rajai Shahr prison which is yet another ward where dangerous criminals are housed. He therefore continued his hunger strike and as a result suffered from intestinal bleeding. He is demanding immediate attention to the legality of his case as Mr. Ebrahimzadeh has served 4 years of his 5 year sentence but the prison authorities are trying to extend his sentence by creating new charges for him. This has become common practice for the Islamic Republic of Iran regarding political prisoners: the prisoners are technically not sentenced to death but silently and slowly killed in prison by various methods such as injuries acquired by extended torture or by being housed alongside very violent offenders; thus lowering the execution rate in the country and avoiding international criticism.
Behnam Ebrahimzadeh is to be tried again in the Islamic Republic’s courts on new charges for writing letters to Mr. Ahmad Shaheed (The UN Special Rapporteur for human rights in Iran) and belonging to a banned opposition group; and yet the prisoner refuses to remain silent and remains on hunger strike in order to bring attention to his case and 7000 other prisoners in Rajai Shahr prison.
Campaign to Free Political Prisoners in Iran (CFPPI), Free Them Now and Children First Now has initiated the Free Behnam campaign in January 2015 to put pressure on the regime in Iran to release labour activist Behnam Ebrahimzadeh.
We ask for help from the international community for this prisoner as he suffers from various ailments such as kidney pain, bleeding gums, neck and back injuries due to extended periods of torture followed by no medical intervention. We believe his life is in grave danger if there is no intervention from labour organisations, human rights organizations and the international community.
A week of solidarity with Behnam has been announced from 12th January – 18th January 2015. We invite you to join the campaign in support of Behnam Ebrahimzadeh.
Please help us in any way possible such as writing to your government officials, International Labour Organisations, UN and the European Union and unions in your country and urge them to take an action in support of Behnam Ebrahimzadeh. You can also organise rallies and solidarity act in your city and sign Behnam’s petition.
Free Behnam campaign
Please SIGN #FreeBehnam Petition: http://chn.ge/1xr3BZD
** Free Behnam campaign has been initiated by the following three organisations. For more information please contact the organisations’ website and their spokespersons.
Campaign to Free Political Prisoners in Iran (CFPPI)
Spokesperson: Shiva Mahbobi
firstname.lastname@example.org, 0044 0 757235 6661
Free Them Now (Campaign to free jailed workers in IRAN)
Spokesperson: Shahla Daneshfar
email@example.com , 0044 0 777989 8968
Children First Now
Spokesperson: Afsaneh Vahdat
firstname.lastname@example.org , 0046-702468454