By Staff Writer, Iran Probe
Tuesday, 15 March 2016
Amnesty International reported on March 11 that the health of Iranian prisoner of conscience Saeed Hosseinzadeh, a 24-year-old children’s rights activist currently on hunger strike, is deteriorating rapidly. He started his hunger strike more than 20 days ago in protest at the authorities’ refusal to release him, despite doctors declaring him unfit to remain in prison due to his poor health. He is suffering from several illnesses, including heart disease and joint, digestive and respiratory problems. However, the Sarrollah Unit of the Revolutionary Guards, which carried out the investigations in his case including the interrogations, has apparently blocked his release or medical leave, putting his life in grave danger.
The harsh human right situation continues even under Rouhani. The number of executions have surged as the UN Special Rapporteur recently reported to UN Human Rights Council, reaching nearly 1000 executions. The Freedom House released recently its 2016 annual report on the human rights situation in Iran reporting that even though Iran gave in to the nuclear accord with the P5+1 to limit its nuclear program, there were no significant improvements in the human rights situation during the year. The report criticized the ongoing systematically human rights abuse in Iran. In respect with human rights activists, the report underscored saying, ‘Activists are routinely arrested without warrants, held indefinitely without formal charges, and denied access to legal counsel or any contact with the outside world. Many are later convicted on vague security charges in trials that sometimes last only a few minutes. Activists say they have been beaten during interrogation, forced into false confessions, and subjected to psychological pressure, including threats that their relatives will be arrested. In the past two years, the IRGC’s intelligence unit appears to have increased its involvement in political repression. The unit reportedly controls a section of Tehran’s Evin prison.’