Tuesday , 21 August 2018

Iran Arrests Prominent Human Rights Lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh

RFL/RE – Prominent Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh has been arrested in the country’s capital, her husband says.

Reza Khandan wrote on Facebook that security forces appeared at the couple’s home on June 13 and took his wife to a court at Tehran’s Evin prison.

Khandan told RFE/RL’s Radio Farda that security forces said that they were taking Sotoudeh away over a prison sentence issued in the past.

“They said they have an arrest warrant for a five-year prison sentence issued for her apparently by a revolutionary court. But they didn’t have the verdict for them,” Khandan said.

He added that Sotoudeh didn’t know “anything” about the case.

The 55-year-old human rights lawyer has been pressured and jailed in the past for taking up sensitive cases.

Sotoudeh has represented several women recently detained for peacefully protesting against the country’s strict dress code by removing their head scarves in public.

An outspoken critic of the Iranian judiciary, she also criticized a newly-created list of lawyers who will be allowed to represent detainees charged with national-security crimes.

The mother of two was arrested in 2010 and sentenced to six years in prison on a number of charges including acting against Iran’s national security.

She was released in 2013 after serving three years.

While in prison, Sotoudeh repeatedly went on hunger strike in protest at her arrest and at being deprived of her rights while in jail.

In 2012, the European Parliament gave its most prestigious award, the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, to Sotoudeh and acclaimed Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi.

With reporting by AFP and AP