Open Letter to UN by 40 political prisoners in Iran urging UN to extend investigator’s mandate


40 Iranian political prisoners have written to the council urging it to extend the mandate of Ahmed Shaheed, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran.

The political prisoners said that the mullahs’ regime had failed to deceive or bribe Mr. Shaheed whose reports they said have had tangible effects in the regime’s prisons.

They added that the regime’s judiciary officials have offered political prisoners clemency if they declare that Mr. Shaheed’s reports are bogus.

Text of the letter by the political prisoners in Iran:

Tehran – Letter by Iranian political prisoners to United Nations Human Rights Council in support of Mr. Ahmed Shaheed

To UN Human Rights Council:

Now that we are on the verge of once again selecting the Special Rapporteur on human rights, we the Iranian prisoners declare our opinion to you to help you in your selection as much as we can.

As we have been spending many years in prison, we are naturally aware of the situation of human rights in Iran more than anyone else and we follow all events and news on human rights not as human rights or politico-social activists in a human rights agency, but as people whose lives depend on it. Therefore, it may well be that what we understand and assess about human rights in Iran and the Special Rapporteur would be closer to reality. Although some of us have not directly benefited from this Rapporteur, we inform you of our opinion by referring to the following issues:

1. Compared to all Special Rapporteurs, Mr. Ahmed Shaheed has been one of the most active, and we have clearly seen the effect of his reports in prisons.

2. There have almost been no serious violations of human rights in prisons that in some way have not been reflected in his reports.

3. There has never been a Special Rapporteur so loathed by the violators [in regime’s judiciary system] such that he is usually insulted or disrespectfully referred to in most court proceedings and interrogations.

4. There have been many instances that prisoners have been summoned because of his reports and despite the insults and accusations, the issues [raised in the reports] have been considered to some extent. This would not have been possible without his reports.

5. We have seen many TV programs that are against Mr. Ahmed Shaheed where he and the Human Rights Council are tagged with voluminous accusations that prisoners know they are false. In particular, everyone knows well Mohammad Javad Larijani and his big falsifications. He is usually the interviewee in these programs against the Human Rights Council and Mr. Ahmed Shaheed.

6. From these TV programs that are against the Human Rights Council and in particular against Mr. Ahmed Shaheed we learn that he is somebody they have not been able to deceive or bribe.

7. Time and again we have been told to declare his reports as bogus and unreal in order to be pardoned or receive concessions from the judiciary.

For all these reasons, we the political prisoners with some of us spending more than 10 years in prison, trustfully support Mr. Ahmed Shaheed and call on the respectable Human Rights Council to extend his mission and reelect him as the Special Rapporteur.

Names of political prisoners:

1. Iraj Hatami
2. Afshin Baimani
3. Asghar Mahmoudian
4. Ebrahim Firouzi
5. Asghar Qatani
6. Amir Qaziani Dourbin
7. Amir Amirqoli
8. Behzad Tarahhomi
9. Pirouz Mansouri
10. Payam Bastani
11. Javad Fouladvand
12. Hamid Babaei
13. Hassan Sadeqi
14. Khaled Hardani
15. Ramadan Ahmad
16. Reza Akbari Monfared
17. Reza Kahe
18. Rasoul Hardani
19. Zaniar Moradi
20. Saeid Shah Qale’ii
21. Saeid Masouri
22. Sohail Babadi
23. Saeid Shirzad
24. Shahram Pourmansouri
25. Shahin Zoqi-tabar
26. Saleh Kohandel
27. Farid Azmoudeh
28. Farhang Pourmansouri
29. Ali Mashhadi Kazem
30. Alireza Qolipour
31. Abdulahad Jalilzadeh
32. Ali Moezzi
33. Gholamhossein Kalbei
34. Loghman Moradi
35. Latif Hassani
36. Mehdi Shandiz
37. Massoud Arab Choubdar
38. Mohammadreza A’alipayam
39. Misaq Yazdan-nejad
40. Vahid Asghari

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