Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Labor Unions and Activists Targeted and Detained.

Members of the Haft Tapeh Sugar Cane Workers Union have been fired, harassed, and evicted for their association. Mr. Karimi and Kei-Khosrohi who work for Haft Tapeh Sugar Cane Industries were recently put on trial for acting against State security while celebrating International Worker's Day. Separately, Mr. Fereydoun Nikoofar, head of the union, was sentenced to one year in prison for his actions and fired after he was released. There are many others who have been imprisoned for their relationships with labor unions. The Union released a statement including:
"We strongly condemn the trials of Mr. Karimi and Kei-Khosrohi for the crime of belonging to the Free Workers Union of Iran. We demand the immediate and unconditional release of Saeed Torabian, Reza Shahabi, Behnam Ebrahimzade, Ebrahim Madadi, Mansou Osanloo, Mehdi Farahi Shandiz, and all other persons seeking their legitimate and freedom-loving rights.
We ask all of the labor organizations and groups in Iran and throughout the world to stand unified and demand the immediate and unconditional release from prison of workers and humans demanding their rights, and to end the relentless judicial pursuit of labor leaders and labor activists."
Labor activists around the globe should view these actions personally and advocate for the rights of the worker.

Bulldozers demolish homes of Baha'is in Iranian village

The homes of 50 Baha'i families in Ivel, Mazandaran were demolished as part of an official action by the government to expel them from the region. The families were blocked from the village while at least four front-end loaders leveled the houses. This is just the latest development of actions to target the Baha'is.
"They're being forbidden to associate with Muslims, or even offer service to their friends and neighbours," said Diane Ala'i, representative of the Baha'i International Community to the United Nations in Geneva.
Images of the homes and maps can be found linked to the article.

IRQR reports on arrest of at least 17 homosexuals in Shiraz

The Iranian Railroad for Queer Refugees reports on the arrest of at least 17 individuals accused of homosexuality in the city of Shiraz, Iran. The group was arrested after a raid on a private party on Sunday, July 11th. In addition to the events in Shiraz, the article also gives updates on other known cases which are expected to lead to executions.

"On the July 8, 2010, Mohammad Mostafai, an Iranian lawyer announced that three of his four clients were cleared of sodomy charges, but one, an eighteen year old youth named Ebrahim Hamidi, was sentenced to be executed.

Also on June 18, 2010 we received reports from Iran regarding three more possible death sentences for homosexuality, one man receiving 74 lashes for his homosexual act and the murder of a 23 year old bisexual man by the Iranian security forces."

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

July 11: International Day Against Stoning

Equal Rights Now - Iran gives a brief overview of International Day Against Stoning held on July 11, 2010.

"We, the International Committee against Stoning, heartened by the success of our campaign to save the Amina Lawal from the brink of stoning, and overwhelmed by the level of support and sympathy directed towards our campaign, are proposing to declare July 11, the day on which in 2001 Maryam Ayoubi, an Iranian woman and mother of three children, was stoned to death, as the International Day against Stoning.

This day was proposed by the International Committee against Stoning at the International Conference against Stoning, held in Naples, Italy on September 26, 2003, and was endorsed by the conference. July 11 should be the day on which people around the world reaffirm their rejection of stoning."

Human Rights Watch calls for a halt to execution for adultery

Human Rights Watch makes their official statement on the case of Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, a 43-year old woman, who is guilty of having an “illicit relationship” with two men following the death of her husband.
“Death by stoning is always cruel and inhuman, and it is especially abhorrent in cases where judges rely on their own hunches instead of evidence to proclaim a defendant guilty,” said Nadya Khalife, Middle East women’s rights researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Iran should immediately put a stop to this execution – and all executions.”
Human Rights Watch reported that Ashtiani’s lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei, fears his client could be executed at any moment.

Stop Stoning Forever Campaign; an Unfinished Story by Shadi Sadr

Stop Stoning Forever Campaign; an Unfinished Story by Shadi Sadr

Shadi Sadr is a member of the Stop Stoning Forever Campaign. Her efforts to save women have been recognized internationally. Her story discusses the history of the organization, some cases, and the successes.

"Now, one year after the campaign started its activities, we can think back and consider our achievements. We managed to save three women, Parisa, Hajieh and Soghra, from stoning by the assistance of domestic and international civil society; we released them from prison and stopped the implementation of the stoning verdict of five other women, Ashraf, Kobra, Kheirieh, Iran and Mokarrameh. We also managed to raised the issue of stoning, which was previously considered taboo, amongst public, women's movement activists, journalists, elites and even high ranked governmental authorities and enhanced it."

Amnesty International - End executions by stoning

In 2008, Amnesty International published a report called "Iran - End executions by stoning"detailing the laws and practices of stoning in Iran. This report also gives examples of the influence of the international community can stop the executions from happening.

‘The size of the stone used in stoning shall not be too large to kill the convict by one or two throws and at the same time shall not be too small to be called a stone.’

Article 104 of Iran’s Islamic Penal Code

This posting is part of a series that focuses on stoning in Iran as we approach July 11, 2010 which is International Day Against Stoning.