Attacked by incited prisoners, Soheil Arabi taken to hospital
Political prisoner Soheil Arabi was taken to hospital after he was beaten by some other inmates incited by prison authorities. He suffered a series of injuries, including a broken nose.
The news was published today by his mother Ms. Farangis Mazloumi who went to prison to visit his son but was told by the warden that Soheil Arabi is deprived of any visits and was taken to hospital.
The political prisoner is being kept in a ward with non-political prisoners, including potentially violent offenders, in violation of Article 69 of Iran’s State Prisons Organization’s regulations.
That article states: “All convicts, upon being admitted to walled prisons or rehabilitation centers, will be separated based on the type and duration of their sentence, prior record, character, morals and behavior, in accordance with decisions made by the Prisoners Classification Council.”
32-year old Soheil Arabi had been serving a seven-and-a-half-year prison sentence since 2013 for criticizing the regime on Facebook. He was arrested in November 2013 by the agents of IRGC’s Sarallah Unit along with his wife, Nastaran Na’imi who was released a few ours later.
Soheil Arabi was kept two months isolated in solitary confinement and subjected to relentless interrogations in Ward 2A, where is under the control of the IRGC.
During interrogation, he was reportedly forced to confessing his alleged crimes, including “insulting the Prophet (Muhammad)” which, under the regime’s penal code is punished by death.
He was then transferred to Section 350 of Evin, which is under control of the Iranian judiciary.
Arabi was sentenced to death on August 30, 2014 for “insulting the Prophet of Islam” (Sabbo al-Nabbi) through the comments he posted on Facebook, by a five-judge panel of Branch 76 of the Criminal Court of Tehran. The Supreme Court upheld the sentence on November 24, 2014.
In a separate case stemming from the same Facebook posts, Soheil Arabi was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for “spreading propaganda against the system” and “insulting the leader,” by a Tehran Revolutionary Court on September 4, 2014.
Upon appeal his death sentence was reduced to seven and a half years in prison and two years of religious studies to prove his repentance, as well as a two-year ban from traveling abroad.
Protesting to the rearrest of his wife plainclothes intelligence officers in July 2017, Arabi started a 2-month hunger strike. Although Mrs. Na’imi was freed eight days later, she was constantly harassed and threatened, and was fired from her job at the request of the IRGC.
In a letter from Evin Prison dated September 14, 2017, Soheil Arabi wrote, “The interrogators of IRGC intelligence continue to treat him and his family in illegal manners.”
Soheil Arabi started a new spell of hunger strike on January 24, 2018, protesting the unlawful exile of political prisoners Atena Daemi and Golrokh Iraee to Qarchak Prison.
Upon the request of her mother and mothers of political prisoners of the movement seeking democracy and equality, he stopped his hunger strike after 55 days at the turn of the New Persian Year On March 20, 2018.
Arabi was violently transferred to the Great Tehran Penitentiary from Evin Prison in Tehran on January 29, 2018.
Located in Tehran Province’s Fashafouyeh district, 20 miles southeast of Tehran, and built in 2015 primarily for holding inmates convicted of drug-related offenses, Iran’s judiciary has also used the Great Tehran Penitentiary to incarcerate dissidents and anti-state protesters convicted of politically motivated charges.