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Children rights activist must be released

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Support jailed children rights activist Saeed Shirzad and demand his immediate and unconditional release from prison.

 Who is Saeed Shirzad?

Saeed Shirzad, age 29, a children rights activist, was arrested at his workplace, Tabriz refinery, on June 2nd 2014 in Iran. After more than 14 months in prison, he was given a date for trial but his lawyer was not allowed to attend or even to access his file. He was sentenced to five years in prison on charge of “gathering and colluding with intention to act against national security”.

Whilst in prison, Saeed was transferred to a solitary confinement in notorious Evin prison where he was interrogated and constantly threatened to be executed. In order to exert more pressure on Saeed, prison authorities transferred him to Gohardasht Prison where he was subjected to more physical and psychological tortures and was not allowed to have any visitors.

He was first arrested in August 2012, when he went to the city of Ahar (East Azerbaijan-Iran) to help the survivors of an earthquake. He was released on bail after 19 days. Saeed Shirzad was working as a volunteer in several NGOs in Iran including Association in Support of Children’s Rights, Children’s Home of Shoush and Society in Defence of Street Children.

In December 2016 Saeed Shirzad went on hunger strike by sewing his lips together for 39 days, in protest of the prison conditions and the way prison guards were treating the prisoners. Saeed wrote a letter in regards to his hunger strike and described the prison conditions, and the demands of his hunger strike in detail. During his hunger strike, Saeed suffered from low blood pressure, severe dehydration, and severe weight loss. Prison officials ignored Saeed’s demands for several weeks. After 39 days the prosecutor’s representative came to meet Saeed and guaranteed that prisoners would no longer be beaten and insulted, and promised to investigate Saeed’s demands. Saeed then decided to end his hunger strike. Saeed is still suffering from the physical side-effect of the hunger strike.

In April 2017, Saeed’s appeal court was held but they have not yet informed him of any verdict and Saeed is still held in Gohardasht Prison in Iran.

Campaign to Free Political Prisoners in Iran would like to invite you to join us to demand the immediate and unconditional release of Saeed Shirzad.

How you can help:

  • SIGN a petition:   Friends of Saeed Shirzad have created this petition to raise awareness on the situation of Saeed. Please sign the petition and share it with your friends:

https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/prisonnotforchildactivists

  • SEND a letter/email/Tweet

(It takes only a few minutes to email/Tweet your message)

*Sample letter:

I/We express my strongest protest against the imprisonment of children rights activist Saeed Shirzad in Iran.  I/We demand the immediate release of Saeed Shirzad.

Name. . . . . . . .

City/country . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Addresses:

To: Hassan Rouhani,  Email: media@rouhani.ir
To: Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations

Email: iran@un.int

To: Mohammed Javad Larijani, Office of the Head of the Judiciary
Email: larijani@ipm.ir (Subject line: FAO Mohammad Javad Larijani)

* Sample Tweet

@HassanRouhani @Asma_Jahangir @KailashSatyarti @eu_eeas Free #SaeedShirzad Children Rights Activist in Jail in #Iran

For more information please contact:

Shiva Mahbobi, Spokesperson for Campaign to Free Political Prisoners in Iran (CFPPI)

shiva.mahbobi@gmail.come  ,   +44 (0)7572356661

http://www.cfppienglish.wordpress.com

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