Jila Bani Yaghoob
Jila Bani Yaghoob, a journalist who runs the Kanoon Zanan Irani (Centre for Iranian Women) website, is supposed to remain silent until 2040. When a Tehran court convicted her in 2010 of “anti-system propaganda” and “insulting the president,” it sentenced her to a year in prison and a 30-year ban on journalistic work. The first part of the sentence began when she went to prison in 2012 and the second part when she was freed in 2013. That wasn’t her first brush with prison. After being arrested at an International Women’s Day meeting on 8 March 2009, she spent a week blindfolded in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison, an experience on which she based a book published abroad. She is also used to being silenced, having spent her career leaving one newspapers after it was closed by the authorities to go to work for another one that would soon be closed. “I wonder how many people in the world are interested in my work, my people and my country,” she asks.