venerdì 5 agosto 2016

IRAN, GIVE YOUR POLITICAL PRISONERS A REAL OPPORTUNITY TO DEFEND THEMSELVES AND THEIR TRIALS!

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Dear isabella, 
I am writing to you with a heavy heart. Yesterday, Shahram Ahmadi, a political prisoner whose mother asked you to support his release in 2014, was executed at Rajaie Shahr Prison, in Iran.
Shahram was one of at least 10 political prisoners executed on Tuesday. The names of six others have been confirmed: Kaveh Sharifi, Kaveh Raeisi, Arash Sharifi, Bahman Rahimi, Mokhtar Rahimi, and Khaled Maleki.
Leave a message on their memorial page.
Each person lost yesterday has a heartbreaking tale of injustice. We shared Shahram’s story with you last November:
Imagine you are arrested when you are 20 and you are severely tortured. A few months later, your underage brother Bahram is also arrested and later, executed. When your mother hears the news she has a heart attack. She became paralyzed in one side, and lost her memory. Your brother’s body is never returned to your family. You are now 27 years old and have already spent 6.5 years in prison.
In the last two years you have had only two family visits. You know you will be executed any day.
Now imagine human rights organizations can't affirmatively say that you are innocent because only a court of law can take such a stance.They only highlight that you didn’t have a real opportunity to defend yourself and your trial, which lasted less than 10 minutes, fell way below international standards for a fair tribunal.
This is the tale of Shahram Ahmadi. Since the day he was arrested, he has been telling anyone who listens that he is innocent. He has been campaigning tirelessly for himself and the other Kurds who face execution.
On days like these my colleagues and I feel helpless. For more than two years we have campaigned to save the lives of Shahram and other Kurdish political prisoners on death row.
We will continue to tell their stories. Despite this heartbreaking setback, we know that advocacy works. Political prisoners have told us over and over that raising awareness –– and your actions on their behalf –– works. Prisoners receive better treatment when cases attract attention. Today, the lives of at least 84 political prisoners who have been sentenced to death, hang in the balance. We won’t stop campaigning until they all receive fair trials.
We have set up an online memorial for Shahram and others executed yesterday to honor them and their families. I invite you to leave a message, share a poem, and light a candle. Join the human rights and the Iranian community in mourning these young men.
In grief and in solidarity, 
Mehdi Aminizadeh
Lead Researcher, Iran Prison Atlas