31 Lawyers and Doctors Call for Freedom of “Peace-Seeking Lawyer and Human Rights Activist”
In a joint letter published today, 31 doctors and human rights lawyers from within Iran and France called on the Iranian government to release imprisoned human rights lawyer Mohammad Najafi, who has been unjustly jailed in Iran since 2018.
“Despite enduring terrible physical and psychological torture, including within the four walls of his cell, Mohammad Najafi never failed to help all those who needed his assistance in defending themselves,” wrote the signatories, whose names have been published below with their titles written in French from the original French-language letter.
“His inspiring struggle obliges us to come together around the world in solidarity,” they added. “The whole world must know that in Iran, lawyers are imprisoned, the right to defense is prohibited, and medical staff are prevented from providing assistance.”
Read the complete letter below.
The life of Mohammad Najafi, an Iranian lawyer, is in danger. He is deprived of medical care and is on his 44thday of a hunger strike. Najafi’s life, an Iranian lawyer who is in prison because of his profession, hangs by a thread. We, lawyers and medical staff in France and Iran, demand his immediate release. We, the lawyers, have sworn to fulfill our duties with dignity and humanity. We, as doctors, have sworn to do whatever it takes to alleviate pain and suffering and protect those whose health is at risk.
The fate of peace-seeking lawyer and human rights activist Mohammad Najafi, who was arrested for defending the rights of others, requires the urgent mobilization of all humanitarians. Mohammad Najafi, who had been convicted nine times on false charges, has been sentenced to prison several times by the Islamic Republic of Iran during the past 15 years. Mohammad Najafi, from the notorious Central Prison in Arak, condemned the ill-treatment of new prisoners arrested during the revolutionary movement following the murder of young Mahsa Jina Amini and the unprecedented “Woman, Life, Freedom” movement.
In the same context, he was unjustly accused of two new crimes during an unfair trial, while his health continued to deteriorate. Mohammad Najafi, who was arbitrarily arrested and deprived of medical care, began a hunger strike on February 1st in protest of his fabricated trial organized by the judiciary and the inhumane and humiliating conditions of his detention.
His life is in danger. He must be released immediately to benefit from medical care. In his latest letter, Mohammad Najafi refers to the severity of his condition (heart, kidney, diabetes, and blood pressure) and reports the lack of attention despite medical recommendations from prison supervisors. In the same letter, titled “War Against Execution,” he exposes the regime’s campaign against his son and lawyer in order to create fear and terror.
Mohammad Najafi has been in solitary confinement since September 21, 2022, for condemning the conditions of other prisoners and the murder of a detainee in police custody. Despite enduring terrible physical and psychological torture, including within the four walls of his cell, Mohammad Najafi never failed to help all those who needed his assistance in defending themselves.
His inspiring struggle obliges us to come together around the world in solidarity. The whole world must know that in Iran, lawyers are imprisoned, the right to defense is prohibited, and medical staff are prevented from providing assistance.
For Mohammad Najafi, for all medical staff who are barred from helping their patients and are arrested, and for all lawyers who are in prison for carrying out their profession, we demand their immediate release.
We call upon all our colleagues around the world to join this solidarity for freedom.
1) Nasrin Soutoudeh, Avocate iranienne, spécialiste des droits de l’homme, récipiendaire du prix Sakharov 2012 et du prix Nobel alternatif 2020,
2) Jérôme Gavaudan, Président du Conseil National des Barreaux et de l’Observatoire International des Avocats en Danger
3) Julie Couturier, Bâtonnière de Paris
4) Vincent Nioré, Vice-Bâtonnier du Barreau de Paris
5) Bruno Blanquer, Président de la conférence des Batonniers
6) Françis Szpiner, Avocat et Maire du 16ème arrondissement de Paris
7) Richard Malka, Avocat, essayiste, romancier et scénariste
8) Professeure Tabassom Simon, Cheffe de service pharmacologie Hôpital Saint Antoine
9) Docteur Yazdan Yazdanpanah, Chef de service des maladies infectieuse à l’Hôpital Bichat
10) Professeur Reza Kianmanesh, Chef de service de la Chirurgie Viscérale CHU de Reims
11) Professeur Nozar Aghakhani, neurochirurgie au CHU du Kremlin Bicêtre
12) Simon Dubois, Président de la Fédération National des Unions des Jeunes Avocat
13) Claire Dujardin, Présidente du Syndicat des Avocats de France
14) Emmanuel Raskin, Président de l’Association des avocats Conseils Entreprises
15) Docteur Ramtin Taghavi, Chirurgien-dentiste
16) Docteur Arshid Azarin, Radiologue du groupe hospitalier Saint Joseph et pianiste de Jazz
17) Richard Sedillot, membre du collectif IranJustice
18) Chirinne Ardakani, membre du collectif IranJustive
19) Hirbod Dehghani-Azar, membre des collectifs IranJustice et Justice4Iran
20) Saeid Dehghan, avocat , spécialiste en droit de l’homme
21) Arash Keykhosravi, avocat, spécialiste en droit de l’homme, prisonnier politique
22) Payam Derafshan, avocat, spécialiste en droit de l’homme, ancien prisonnier politique
23) Mehrangiz Kar , avocat, spécialité en droit de l’homme, ancien prisonnier politique
24) Ramezan Haji Mashhadi
25) Hossein Raisi
26) Mohammad Oliyaiefard
27) Mohammad Moghimi
28) Hossein Ahmadi Niaz
29) Majid Pour Ostad
30) Manouchehr Tavasoli
31) Shirin Maleki