Iran: Deterioration of the medical situation of Ms. Narges Mohammadi

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New information
IRN 005 / 0619 / OBS 049
Arbitrary detention/
Critical health condition/
Ill-treatment in detention
June 11, 2019

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of FIDH and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Iran.

New information:

The Observatory has been informed by the League for the Defence of Human Rights in Iran (LDDHI) about the deterioration of the medical condition of Ms. Narges Mohammadi, a journalist, Spokesperson and Vice-President of the Defenders of Human Rights Center (DHRC) [1], who is serving a 16-year prison sentence. Ms. Narges Mohammadi suffers from several very serious health conditions, including a pulmonary embolism and a neurological disorder that results in partial paralysis. Her health condition is exacerbated by the authorities’ refusal to allow her adequate medical care in or out of prison.

According to information received, on April 27, 2019, Ms. Narges Mohammadi was transferred to Mehr Hospital for medical examination and returned to Evin prison on the same day. On May 14, 2019, she was sent to hospital again, where she underwent a hysterectomy operation, and was returned to prison on May 26, 2019, before she had recuperated. On June 2, 2019, she was reported to have contracted a serious infection, and is since denied adequate medication (i.e. antibiotics) in prison.

The Observatory expresses its strong concern over the physical well-being of Ms. Narges Mohammadi and calls on the Iranian authorities to immediately and unconditionally release her and allow her immediate access to adequate medical care.

Background information:

On May 18, 2016, Branch 15 of Tehran Islamic Revolution Court found Ms. Narges Mohammadi guilty of “assembly and collusion to commit crimes against national security” (under Article 610 of the Islamic Penal Code), “spreading propaganda against the State” (under Article 500) and “establishing and running the illegal splinter group LEGAM [2]” (under Article 498), and sentenced her to a total 16 years in prison.

On September 28, 2016, Branch 36 of Tehran Court of Appeals upheld the sentence and asserted that pursuant to Article 134 of the Islamic Penal Code, she must serve the maximum sentence, i.e. 10 years [3]. At the time of her sentencing, she was already serving the remainder of a six-year sentence dating back to September 2011, when she was found guilty of acting against national security, propaganda against the State and membership of the banned DHRC.

On January 3, 2019, Ms. Narges Mohammadi undertook a three-day hunger strike to protest being denied access to medical care.

Actions requested:

Please write to the authorities of Iran asking them to:

i. Guarantee in all circumstances the physical integrity and psychological well-being of Ms. Narges Mohammadi, and allow her immediate access to adequate medication and medical care;

ii. Immediately and unconditionally release Ms. Narges Mohammadi, and all human rights defenders arbitrarily detained in the country;

iii. Put an end to all acts of harassment, including at the judicial level, against Ms. Narges Mohammadi, and all other human rights defenders, and ensure they are able to carry out their activities without hindrance;

iv. Conform to all the provisions of the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Defenders adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 9, 1998, in particular its Articles 1, 6, 9, 11 and 12;

v. Ensure in all circumstances respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international human rights standards and international instruments ratified by Iran.


• Leader of the Islamic Republic, H.E. Ayatollah Sayed Ali Khamenei, Fax: + 98 21 441 2030, Email:; Twitter: @khamenei_ir
• President Hassan Rouhani, Islamic Republic of Iran, Fax: + 98 21 644 54811; Email:; Twitter: @HassanRouhani (English) and @Rouhani_ir (Persian).
• Head of the Judiciary, H.E. Hojattolislam Ebrahim Ra’eesi, Islamic Republic of Iran, Fax: +98 21 879 6671 / +98 21 3 311 6567, Email: / /
• Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mohammad Javad Zarif, Islamic Republic of Iran, Fax: +98-21-66743149;
• Secretary General, High Council for Human Rights, Mr. Mohammed Javad Larijani, Islamic Republic of Iran. Email:
• H.E. Mr. Esmaeil Baghaei Hamaneh, Ambassador, Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Fax: +41 22 7330203, Email:
• H.E. Mr. Peiman Seadat, Ambassador, Embassy of Iran in Brussels, Belgium, Fax: + 32 2 762 39 15. Email:

Please also write to the diplomatic representations of Iran in your respective countries.

Paris-Geneva, June 11, 2019

Kindly inform us of any action undertaken quoting the code of this appeal in your reply.

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders (the Observatory) was created in 1997 by FIDH and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT). The objective of this programme is to prevent or remedy situations of repression against human rights defenders. FIDH and OMCT are both members of, the European Union Human Rights Defenders Mechanism implemented by international civil society.
To contact the Observatory, call the emergency line:
• E-mail:
• Tel and fax FIDH +33 (0) 1 43 55 25 18 / +33 1 43 55 18 80
• Tel and fax OMCT +41 (0) 22 809 49 39 / +41 22 809 49 29

[1] DHRC was founded by five lawyers including the Nobel Peace Prize laureate Ms. Shirin Ebadi and was closed by the Iranian regime in 2008. It is a member of FIDH.
[2] Step by step abolition of the death penalty, also known as LEGAM, is a human rights group that campaigned for the abolition of death penalty in Iran.
[3] See Observatory Press Release published on September 29, 2016.

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