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The six protesters on trial were Mohammad Qobadlou, Mohammad Broghani, Saman Seyyedi, Abolfazl Mehri Hossein Hajilou, Mohsen Rezazadeh Qaraqalou, and Saeed Shirazi. Three were charged with “waging war on God,” and two others with “corruption on Earth.”
Iranian wife killer free while journalist who exposed killer in jail
Eleven months after the murder of a child bride by her cleric husband in Lorestan western Iran, Shargh state-run daily said the cleric is free while the journalist who exposed the cleric’s role in the murder has been sentenced to prison.
According to the July 31 report, Ali Mojtahedzadeh, the lawyer of the journalist who exposed the murder said that Sina Qalandari was sentenced to 13 months and 16 days of prison for “publishing private pictures of the victim” and to another 13 months and 16 days of prison for “publishing lies”. He was also sentenced to a two-year ban on journalism and the closure of his Telegram channel.
Mr. Qalandari is a local reporter in Lorestan who published a report on the honor killing of 16-year-old Mobina Souri by her cleric husband and family members last August. He was arrested a few days after publishing the report following complaints by the victim’s family and the suspects and was released on bail 11 days later.
Mojtahedzadeh said the murderer “received a 2–3-year prison term a few months after the murder and is now roaming free on bail and getting on with his life.”
Political prisoner in poor health condition after giving birth
Political prisoner Soada Khadirzadeh has been held in Urmia Prison despite her poor health after giving birth.
Branch 3 of the Criminal Court of Mahabad County has set bail of 3 billion Tomans for her release, which her family has so far failed to secure.
She gave birth to her baby girl on June 20 after two weeks of delay. She was kept in prison until 3 hours before delivering her baby. Her legs and arms had swollen, and her baby’s health was at risk.
Urmia Prison authorities transferred her to a medical center only 3 hours before delivering her baby by a C-section operation.
She was hospitalized for 10 hours and was denied access to her family during that time. Only once did she speak to her relatives by telephone.
She was returned to the women’s ward of Urmia Central Prison without completing her treatment the same evening.
Trade union activist Mohammad Ali Zahmatkesh on hunger strike to protest continued detention
Iranian trade union activist Mohammad Ali Zahmatkesh has been on a hunger strike since June 30, in Adelabad Prison of Shiraz. He is protesting his continued detention and his confinement with common criminals.
Mohammad Ali Zahmatkesh was arrested on May 14 in a peaceful gathering of teachers in the city of Shiraz.
Iranian security forces began a widespread wave of arrests of teachers and educators a few days before the nationwide protest of teachers on May 1, which marks Teacher’s Day in Iran.
Iran sentences Azerbaijani Turkic Minority Rights Activist to Flogging
A court in Iran has sentenced Azerbaijani Turkic minority rights activist Hojjat Esmatzadeh to 50 lashes and two years and six months in prison.
According to the verdict, issued in absentia by Branch 101 of the Criminal Court of Naghadeh, Hojjat Esmatzadeh was sentenced to 50 lashes and one year in prison for disturbing public order and 18 months in prison for publishing pictures on social media.
Hojjat Esmatzadeh was arrested on November 24, 2021, after being summoned to the Naghadeh Intelligence Office, and was transferred to Naghadeh Prison.
He was released on bail on November 28, 2021, awaiting trial.
He has previously been arrested and summoned for his activities.
Arash Ghaleh Golab, Iranian Journalist Detained During Mourning Ceremony
Poet and journalist Arash Ghaleh Golab has not been allowed to contact his family since he was arrested on May 26, during a protest over the recent collapse of a building in the Iranian port city of Abadan.
Ghaleh Golab was violently arrested by security forces during a state crackdown on protests and remains in detention while suffering from acute respiratory illness and diabetes.
In a statement on June 1, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) expressed concern over his arrest.
CPJ said that a “source familiar with the case” said that officers hit Ghaleh-Golab “with their fists and kicked him” during his arrest, adding that he is being detained without charge at an undisclosed location and not being allowed to contact his family.
Monthly report May 2022, Iran Human Rights Monitor
May 2022 saw the Iranian regime ratchet up social clampdown in step with the growing discontent and the spread of popular protests.
Iranian authorities intensified their crackdown on society amid protests against rising prices.
Security forces arrested dozens of teachers in the four days leading up to international workers’ day, between April 28 and May 1, 2022.
Peaceful rallies were held in many Iranian cities on May Day, which coincides with International Workers Day and Teachers’ Day in Iran. The regime imposed tight security measures in several cities to prevent the protests from spreading.
In some cities, rallies turned violent with police and security forces attacking and beating demonstrators. Dozens of teachers and educators were beaten and detained.
May was also marked by widespread protests in various provinces, including Khuzestan, Lorestan, Fars, and Tehran.
A new round of protests in Iran started on May 5, after the government removed subsidies on basic food items which have sent prices skyrocketing including the price of non-traditional bread, flour, dairy products, cooking oil, poultry, and eggs.
Reports say the protests spread to at least 31 cities.
Authorities resorted to violence to quell the protests. At least six protesters were killed by security forces amid a violent state crackdown on the protests, while the authorities blocked internet access in the unrest cities.
The slain protesters are Pish Ali Ghalebi, Omid Soltani, Hamid Ghasempour, Saadat Hadipour, Jamshid Mokhtari Junghani, and Behrooz Eslami.
Security forces resorted to widespread arrests to counter the protests. There have been reports of hundreds of arrests in Izeh (Khuzestan Province) alone and 50 in the city of Shahr-e Kord (Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari Province).
Numerous labor, civil and political rights activists have been arbitrarily arrested.
Lethal state crackdown on food protests in Iran amid internet blackouts
Food protests in Iran triggered last week by a sudden hike in prices of essential goods were violently repressed with security forces using lethal force
A new wave of nationwide protests was triggered last week by a cut in state subsidies for imported wheat that caused price hikes of as much as 300% for a variety of flour-based staples.
The prices of essential goods including bread, milk, dairy products, eggs, poultry, and cooking oil have also risen sharply amid Iran’s 40-percent inflation rate.
The cities of Andimeshk, Dezful, Izeh, Droud, Shahrekord, Junqan, Yasuj, and Neishabour were among areas hit by protests over skyrocketing prices of food staples.
All sectors of Iranian society are being crushed under soaring inflation, rampant unemployment, meager wages, and widespread water shortages, as well as the Iranian regime’s repressive policies.
Speaking on May 9 on state television, Raisi pledged that the price of traditional bread, gasoline, and medicine would remain unchanged.
In order to compensate for the rise in prices, Raisi said direct payments equivalent to approximately $10 or $13 would be disbursed for two months for each family member of low-income households. Later, he said Iranians will be offered electronic coupons that would allow them to access a limited amount of subsidized bread.
Reports suggested that the price of cooking oil had almost quadrupled since Raisi’s announcement, while the price of eggs and chicken nearly doubled.