- UN, Ban ki-Moon, UNHCHR, Navi Pillay, Ahmed Shaheed, EU, European Parliament, State Department
UPDATE: WEDNESDAY, APRIL 30, 2014 -- On April 17, which has come to be known as "Black Thursday" jailers viciously beat Iranian prisoners of conscience held in Ward 350 of the infamous Evin Prison. Many required hospitalization as a consequence. Immediately, several prisoners of conscience launched a hunger strike, including Behzad Arabgol. IT IS NOW REPORTED THAT BEHZAD ARABGOL, WHO IS BEING HELD IN SOLITARY CONFINMENT, IS ON A DRY HUNGER STRIKE TO PROTEST THE BRUTAL SAVAGERY OF THE REVOLUTIONARY GUARDS.
Committee of Human Rights Reporters - Behzad Arabgol, war veteran, presidential campaign activist and Ashura detainee, was transferred to Evin prison today April 30th, to serve his 4-year prison sentence.
According to CHRR, this Green movement activist and Iran-Iraq war veteran who still carries shrapnel in his body from the war, was arrested during the Ashura protests following the disputed presidential elections in 2009, and endured 6 months behind bars in Evin prison under difficult conditions and harsh interrogations.
This Green activist who has never used his veteran's benefits, was handed a 6-year prison sentence by the notoriouis Judge Salavati presiding over Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court: five years on the charge of “illegal gathering,” and one year on the charge of “mutiny.” The sentence was later commuted to a total of 4 years in prison by the court of appeals.
Following several intimidating visits by agents to his home, in March 2010 Behzad Arabgol presented himself at the Ministry of Intelligence in order to spare his family from further harassment. He was held in solitary confinement at Evin prison for extended periods of time and faced intense interrogations before being released on 100 million Tomans bail on July 7, 2010.
Behzad Arabgol is a father to a 4.5-year old and a 7-year old, and supported his family through his job as a construction worker.
WHEREAS: Behzad Arabgol is clearly a prisoner of conscience imprisoned solely for pursuit of his rights to peaceful political and social activism as guaranteed under both Article 18, Section 1, and Article 19, Sections 1 & 2 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (to which Iran in addition to the guarantees provided by Article 24 of the Iranian constitution;
AND WHEREAS: The arrest, sentencing and continued imprisonment of Mr Arabgol are therefore illegal under both international and Iranian law;
THEREFORE: We, the undersigned, urge the international community to bring all possible pressure to bear upon the Islamic Republic of Iran to immediately and unconditionally release Behzad Arabgol from prison, rescind the illegal sentence imposed upon him, and drop all charges against him.
The Free Iranian War Veteran and Green Movement Activist Behzad Arabgol petition to UN, Ban ki-Moon, UNHCHR, Navi Pillay, Ahmed Shaheed, EU, European Parliament, State Department was written by John S. Burke and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.