RSF backs global campaign for Narges Mohammadi’s release

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) supports the “Global Solidarity for the Release of Narges Mohammadi” campaign launched last weekend by the Defenders for Human Rights Centre in Iran, which is led by Nobel peace laureate Shirin Ebadi. An Iranian journalist, Mohammadi is the centre’s spokesperson.

“By joining this campaign, we are denouncing the persecution of journalists and human rights defenders in Iran,” RSF secretary-general Christophe Deloire said. “We hope that an energetic international campaign in support of this courageous Iranian woman will persuade the Iranian authorities to free her immediately.”

When Ebadi and Deloire met Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo last month, Hidalgo expressed great concern about the fate of this journalist and staunch women’s rights advocate, who was awarded the City of Paris medal on 3 May (World Press Freedom Day). The City of Paris called for Mohammadi’s release in a tweet on 29 September.

Aged 46, Mohammadi has been detained since May 2015 and was sentenced to a total of 16 years in prison in April of this year at the end of trial that was marked by irregularities and influenced by the ministry of intelligence. The sentence was upheld by an appeal court on 27 September.

Mohammadi is required to serve 10 of the 16 years under a law adopted in 2015, according to which anyone convicted on several criminal charges serves only the sentence corresponding to the most important charge.

She had often been subjected to intimidation and arbitrary detention in the past. When arrested in 2010, she was held for several months and then released provisionally because her health had deteriorated alarmingly as a result of heavy-handed interrogation sessions. She nonetheless spent another three months in prison in 2012.

Since her return to prison in 2015, she has been denied the medical attention she needs and her health is now in great danger.

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Updated on 21.10.2016