By AIW Staff
Seventeen Iranian women political prisoners have issued a statement condemning the treatment of mothers in Iranian prisons and jails.
On Sunday, October 13th, Defenders of Human Rights Center in Iran, released a statement signed by 17 female political prisoners condemning the regime’s “oppression of women, and its inhumane and unjust behavior.”
The statement cites the arrests of Farangees Mazloum, the mother of political prisoner Soheil Arabi, and of Raheleh Asal Ahmadi, the mother of political prisoner Saba Kord-Afshari, as examples of the repression against “mothers and liberated women” under the Islamic regime. More specifically, the statement describes the travails mothers of arrested children undergo when they themselves become targets of the regime’s repression.
Also mentioned in the statement is the five-year-old daughter of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliff, who “had no choice but to leave Iran and live with her father, after three years and eight months away from her mother.” When regime officials make Nazanin’s release “dependent on the results of deals and bargains with the British, they ignore human beings, human rights, justice, and truth.”
The imprisoned women then go on to call the Islamic regime “misogynist,” one which “for all these years has waged a misogynistic campaign against women and mothers who desire freedom and justice.”
“In just the past few months, Farangees Mazloum, despite being ill, was arrested for simply defending her son, Soheil Arabi. The mother of Ali-Reza Shir Mohammad Ali had her son die in prison because she could not afford a $700 bail. Rahaleh Asal Ahmadi was arrested for speaking out on behalf of her daughter, Saba Kord-Afshari. There are many more cases like these.”
The statement continued: “Many women have given birth to, and raised, their children while in prison. Mothers have even been deprived of the right to see the bodies and graves of their deceased children.”
The statement’s signatories are Yasmine Ariani, Maryam Akbari Monafared, Sima Entezari, Aras Amiri, Marzieh Amiri, Leyla Hosseinzadeh, Nazanin Zaghari, Zahra Zehtabchi, Atena Daemi, Fatemeh Ziai, Monireh Arabshahi, Negin Ghadamian, Saba Kord-Afshari, Neda Naji, Nargess Mohammadi, Fereshteh Mohammadi, and Sepideh Moradi. All are well-known women’s human rights activists.
Last year, Amnesty International called 2018 a “year of shame for the Islamic Regime,” stating that more than seven thousand people were arrested for demonstrating against the regime, including students, journalists, women’s rights activists, environmentalists, labor rights activists, ethnic minority activists, and religious minority activists.
The US State Department recently condemned the regime’s persecution of women’s rights activists, and called for an end to the imprisonment of women for simply demanding their basic and fundamental rights.