Iranian lawyers Arash Keykhosravi and Qasem Sholeh Sa’di who had been arrested on August 18 for taking part a protest rally in front of regime’s parliament, have been sentenced to a total of 12 years in jail.
Speaking with the state-run IRNA news agency on Monday, Abouzar Nasrollahi, the lawyer of Arash Keykhosravi said he has been sentenced to five years behind bars for “assembly and collusion” and one year in prison for “spreading propaganda against the state.”
He went on to say that Shole Saadi has also been sentenced for the same crimes.
The preliminary verdicts were issued on Sunday by the notorious judge, Abolghasem Salavati, the head of Branch 15, Tehran’s Revolutionary Court.
According to Amnesty International the arrests of lawyers and other activists are “part of an escalating crackdown to quash Iran’s civil society completely and leave human rights defenders in a suffocating climate of fear.”
“The human rights situation in Iran has reached crisis point. Mild expressions of concern are not enough. We call on the international community to demand that the Iranian authorities stop attacks on human rights defenders, including human rights lawyers and women’s rights activists. It should urge the authorities to immediately and unconditionally release those most recently detained and ensure that every detainee is provided access to a lawyer of their own choosing from the time of arrest,” Amnesty International said in its September 3 statement.
Arash Keykhosravi, Ghassem Sholeh-Sa’di and another attoreny Masoud Javadieh had been peacefully protesting outside the regime’s parliament against the vetting of candidates in elections and calling for free, fair and transparent elections.
Masoud Javadieh was released on bail the next day but Arash Keykhosravi and Ghassem Sholeh-Sa’di were transferred to Fashafouyeh prison in the south of Tehran and charged with “gathering and colluding to commit crimes against national security.”
Ghassem Sholeh Sa’di was released on bail on December 4.
Prior to his arrest, Arash Keykhosravi had been representing the family of academic and environmental activist Kavous Seyed-Emami, an Iranian-Canadian man who died under suspicious circumstances in Tehran’s Evin prison in February 2018.