Women’s Forum Against Fundamentalism in Iran


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                          

Public Statement

CONTACT: press@wfafi.org   

February 16, 2006

Iranian regime has unleashed a new wave of terror on

 political prisoners, labor union and Dervishes (Sofis) in Iran

BOSTON, MA In a shameless act of defiance, after being reported to the United Nations Security Council, the fundamentalist regime in Tehran began massive arrests, attacks and executions of political prisoners. Reports from Iran indicate that some political prisoners have disappeared, and the rest have been threatened with a massacre similar to summer of 1988 where thousands of political prisoners were executed in accordance with Khomeini's clerical edict.

Women's Forum Against Fundamentalism in Iran has also received news on threats against the young female journalist, Elham Afrootan, who has been in prison in Hormozgan province for publishing a satirical article in a local paper called "Tamadoun Hormozgan". Elahm's life, who is only 19-year-old, is in imminent danger because she is facing death penalty for a satirical article in which the Islamic revolution, namely Khomeini, is compared to the AIDS virus.

Attacks, arrests and executions in recent weeks include:

February 7th- Hojjat Zamani hanged in the infamous Gohardasht prison near Tehran. The 30-year-old, Hojjat, was under severe physical and psychological torture for 4 years for his political beliefs. He was the third son from Zamani family to be executed by the clerical regime. They were all members of the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MeK). Hojjat was executed exactly three days after Iran was reported to UN Security Council.

February 14th- the suppressive State Security Forces attacked a demonstration held by Nematollahi Dervishes (Sofis), their families and residents of the holy city of Qum. The protest was crushed by anti-riot forces and over 500 people including 150 women were arrested and moved to an unknown location. Sofi's mosque was also demolished by the fundamentalist agents of the regime.

February 15th- The fundamentalist regime in Tehran sentenced 3 teenage boys aged: 15, 18 and 19 to death. The announcements were printed in the State-run media or websites.

Since January 28th- Tehran's bus drivers (Sherkat-e-Vahed) have been on strike. More than one thousand workers have been arrested and moved to the notorious Evin prison in Tehran. The Security forces attacked their homes and detained some family members as well.

Such evidence of blatant violations of rights and international norms must be strongly condemned by the international community. Ahmadinejad's regime must be held responsible for terror at home. His regime must be referred to the United Nations Security Council for State-sponsor of violence against its own citizens. Women's Forum Against Fundamentalism in Iran (WFAFI) calls upon the United Nations High Commissioner of Human Rights, the United Nations Security Council, the International Human Rights organizations community to dispatch fact finding missions to Iran and provide report on the status of political prisoners. The lives of these prisoners, including the Dervishes (Sofis) recently arrested in Qum, are in danger. The world must intervene to avoid another purge and massacre of political prisons in Iran. In light of the State Department Democracy Initiative in Iran, WFAFI hopes the US officials, publicly and pointedly, mention the above cases while criticizing the Iranian regime.



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Fax: (610) 862-9110