Iran: Hunger striking political prisoner denied family visit


Hunger striking political prisoner Mohammad Saber Malek Raisi is still deprived of family visit and telephone calls on the 37th day of his strike.

Political prisoner Mohammad Saber Malek Raisi wrote a letter to Ms. Asmah Jahangir, the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran on December 4, 2017, detailing harsh condition and torture he has been enduring in Ardabil Prison.

“On Wednesday November 27, my religion and beliefs were insulted by the Central Ardabil Prison Protection and Intelligence Office and I was then taken to the office of the head of prison guards. While there, the head of the section and the head of the guards tied my hands and feet and beat me with a baton. While punching and kicking my face, they used profane language against my family to insult me. They then transferred me to quarantine…” his letter reads in part.

Four political prisoners Maher Ka’bi, Ali Pazhgol and Nourahmad Hassanzehi also wrote a letter to Ms. Asma Jahangir, the UN Special Rapporteur on Iran Human Rights, and Mr. Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, high commissioner for human rights to urge inquiry into the situation of the young prisoner Mohammad Saber Maleki Raisi.

“Saber went on hunger strike after he was severely beaten on November 29 by prison authorities. Prison authorities tied him, tortured and beat him to the extent that he is now complaining about heart problems… Saber Malek Raisi’s life is in danger. Thus, we ask you to put pressure on the government to end the harassment of political prisoners, especially ethnic and religious minorities.

We and our friend Saber have committed no other crime than being Baluchi and Sunni,” the letter reads in part.

The young prisoner serving his prison term in exile in the Ardebil Prison thousands of miles away from his family.

Because of far distance, he does not have any in-person family visits and the only way to stay connected with his family is telephone calls which he has currently been denied.

Mohammad Saber Malek Raisi was arrested in 2009 at the age of 15. He was sentenced to 15 years behind bars for “collaboration with opposition groups.”

His family however have frequently stressed that their son is innocent and is considered hostage of the Ministry of Intelligence to force his elder brother to hand himself in to the authorities.

Security officials told the family that if their other son Abdul Rahman surrender himself to security forces, Mohammad will be released. Abdul Rahman, fled the country in 2009 fearing for his life after he refused spy on Sunni scholars and Balochi tribes.

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