Free Iranian IT Expert Arash Azad
- UN, Dr Ahmad Shaheed, UNHCR, Navi Pillay, EU, European Parliament, State Department, Ban ki-Moon
Nearly two months after the arrest of information technology expert Arash Azad, who was detained at Imam Khomeini Airport by the authorities as he was leaving Iran on August 1, 2015, officials have released no information as to why he was arrested or the charges that he is being held under.
Arash Azad, who is the founder of the respected technology sites Weblogina and Zigzaglab.com, received a U.N. World Summit Youth Award in 2014 for Ladybug, a service aimed at increasing women’s participation in the Iranian information technology sector.
The Internet researcher Nariman Gharib told the Campaign, “We didn’t find out about Arash’s arrest until we started getting phishing emails from his personal account. Given the history of these kinds of arrests, he’s probably been arrested by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards.”
During the past two years, the authorities in Iran, led by intelligence organizations controlled by the Revolutionary Guards, have aggressively pursued and targeted Internet professionals and online activists, arresting them and working hand-in-hand with the Judiciary and Revolutionary Courts to sentence these individuals to long prison terms.
WHEREAS: Iranian information technology expert Arash Azad was arrested in Tehran on August 1, 2015 and two months later the authorities still haven't disclosed any charges against him;
AND WHEREAS: His arrest and continued detention fit the pattern of recent arrests of Iranian cyber citizens based on nothing more than their peaceful online activities, making them prisoners of conscience;
AND WHEREAS: His arrest and continued detention are therefore ILLEGAL under Articles 18 and 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as well as Article 24 of the Iranian Constitution;
THEREFORE: We, the undersigned, demand that the international community bring all possible pressure to bear to secure the IMMEDIATE and UNCONDITIONAL release of Arash Azad.
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The Free Iranian IT Expert Arash Azad petition to UN, Dr Ahmad Shaheed, UNHCR, Navi Pillay, EU, European Parliament, State Department, Ban ki-Moon was written by John S. Burke and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.