Kurdish political prisoner sews lips together demanding basic rights
Ramin Hossein Panahi a Kurdish man who has been sentenced to death in Iran, has started a hunger strike with his mouth sewn at Sunday evening local time.
Amjad Hossein Panahi, the brother of Kurdish political prisoner said that other inmates held at the same ward with Ramin, had told the family that he had been wounded during his transfer to solitary confinement and that when he was taken out of the prison, possibly to a hospital. He suggested the imprisoned activist may have been “roughed up” by prison guards or other inmates, or that he may have resisted movement which could have led to the guards using excessive force.
“We think that he may be in one of Tehran’s hospitals, but as of yet we don’t know his fate and whether or not he has been hanged.”
Panahi was arrested in June last year and was sentenced to death in January 2018 by Branch 1 of the Revolutionary Court in Sanandaj for his alleged membership in the outlawed Kurdish nationalist group, Komala. He has also been accused of drawing a weapon against agents of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Panahi, has insisted he did not participate in any armed action nor did he reach for a weapon.
Iran’s Supreme Court upheld the sentence in April and his execution was scheduled for May 3 but was postponed after international outcry by the United Nations and rights organizations. Panahi’s request for a case review was then rejected by Iran’s Supreme Court, leaving him in danger of imminent execution.
Ramin Hossein Panahi was transferred hundreds of miles to Rajaei Shahr Prison of Karaj, west of Tehran for unknown reasons on August 14, raising fears he could soon be executed.