Iran: Release immediately Abdolfattah Soltani, human rights defender and lawyer

24/03/2018
Our Movement

Updated on 27 March 2018 - At the request of more than 3,600 human and civil rights activists, and human rights lawyers, Mr. Soltani suspended his hunger strike yesterday, 26 March, until 20 April 2018 to see if his demands shall be attended to.

24 March 2018 – Mr Abdolfattah Soltani, human rights defender and lawyer, imprisoned for his peaceful human rights work in Tehran’s Evin prison since 2011, started a hunger strike on 21 March 2018, the first day of the Iranian New Year.

Having been in prison since 10 September 2011, he was sentenced, after unfair trials, to 18 years – subsequently commuted to 10 years – imprisonment for his peaceful human rights work. His current demands include his own “immediate and unconditional release.”

Karim Lahidji, Honorary President of International Federation for Hhuman Rights (FIDH) and President of the League for the Defence of Human Rights in Iran (LDDHI), said:

“Responding to a joint petition by FIDH and OMCT in 2013, the UN Working Group for Arbitrary Detentions found that Mr Soltani’s detention was arbitrary and ordered the Iranian government to release him immediately. As in many similar instances, the Iranian regime has failed to fulfil its obligations under the international human rights treaties, to which Iran is a State party. Even one day in prison is too many for our colleague Abdolfattah Soltani. He must be released immediately and unconditionally and the Iranian government must compensate him for all those years he has unfairly spent in prison.”

League for the Defence of Human Rights in Iran (LDDHI) calls on all supporters of basic human rights, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly and freedom of association, to write letters to the Iranian authorities and call on them to immediately release Mr Soltani and all other human rights defenders, e.g. Ms Narges Mohammai, Ms Atena Daemi, Ms Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee, Mr Esmaeil Abdi… Please also write to authorities in other countries, especially in the EU, to request them to take action in support of this call.

For addresses and demands and other information, see the text below by Ms Maede Soltani, Mr. Soltani’s daughter, which LDDHI has translated from German.

For detailed information regarding Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani, the charges against him and other issues, see:

Arbitrary arrest of Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani
https://www.fidh.org/en/region/asia...

United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention orders immediate release of Abdolfattah Soltani!
https://www.fidh.org/en/region/asia...

Prominent human rights lawyer sentenced to 13 years imprisonment in exile on appeal
https://www.fidh.org/en/region/asia...

FIDH President calls for attention to the plight of Iranian prisoners of conscience
https://www.fidh.org/en/region/asia...

For more information contact: lddhi(at)fidh.org.

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Maede Soltani’s text:

Ladies and gentlemen, fellow combatants,

My father Abdolfattah Soltani (Human Rights Defender & Lawyer) was arrested on 10 September 2011.

After several unfair trials, he was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment on the following charges:

1. Spreading propaganda against the system;
2. Founding an illegal group (i.e. the "Defenders of Human Rights Centre");
3. Accepting of an illegal prize from Nuremberg (i.e. the international human rights prize of the city of Nuremberg/Germany).

On 6 February 2013, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detentions ruled that "the detention of the lawyer and founding member of the Defenders of Human Rights Centre, Abdolfattah Soltani, was arbitrary" and ordered the Iranian government to release him immediately.

Please support my father’s demands as follows:

• His own immediate and unconditional release;
• Lawful treatment of all political prisoners; &
• An end to discrimination in all Iranian prisons.

There are official holidays during the current week in Iran in celebration of the Iranian New Year. It will be very helpful if strong international solidarity is displayed during this time, so that international pressure will leave its impact after the holidays.

Possible recipients for your emails and letters are listed below. I have also included text suggestions, which you are welcome to use.

Thank you for your great support.

Kind regards,

Maede Soltani

I. Please send emails to the following authorities with the following demands:

  1. Please release Abdolfattah Soltani immediately and unconditionally, as he is a prisoner of conscience held solely for peacefully exercising his right to freedom of expression and association.
  1. Pending his release, please allow him furlough from prison according to the pertaining law; and ensure that he receives adequate medical care.

RECIPIENTS:

* Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran
H.E. Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei,
The Office of the Supreme Leader, Shahid Keshvardoost St., Jomhuri Eslami Ave., Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran,
Faxes: + 98 21 649 5880 / 21 774 2228,
Email: info_leader@leader.ir;
Twitter: @khamenei_ir

* THE PRESIDENCY
H.E. President Hassan Rouhani,
Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran,
Tel: +98 21 64 451; Fax: + 98 21 649 58 80;
Email: media@rouhani.ir;
Twitter: @HassanRouhani (English) and @Rouhani_ir (Persian).

* HEAD OF THE JUDICIARY
H.E. Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani,
Office of the Head of the Judiciary, Pasteur Street, Vali Asr Avenue, south of Serah-e Jomhuri, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran,
Fax: +98 21 879 6671 / +98 21 3 311 6567,
Email: info@dadiran.ir; / info@dadgostary-tehran.ir / info@bia-judiciary.ir

* MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS
Mr. Mohammad Javad Zarif,
Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Abdolmajid Kushk-e Mesri Av, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran, Fax: +98-21-66743149; matbuat@mfa.gov.ir

* SECRETARY GENERAL, HIGH COUNCIL FOR HUMAN RIGHTS,
Mr. Mohammed Javad Larijani,
[Care of] Office of the Head of the Judiciary, Pasteur St, Vali Asr Ave, South of Serah-e Jomhouri, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran.
Email: info@humanrights-iran.ir

* Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in your country

II. Please send emails to the following authorities and ask for their support:

* IRAN BAR ASSOCIATION
No. 3, Zagros St, Tehran, Iran
Email: info@icbar.ir

[Ms Maede Soltani’s letter has provided addresses of the relevant German authorities. LDDHI shall be happy to provide the addresses in the following cases:]

* Your government’s representative for Human Rights

* Your Parliament’s Human Rights Committee or the committee responsible

* Your Ministry of Foreign Affairs

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