Iranwire – Women’s rights activists who were arrested in northern Gilan have been subjected to physical abuse and beatings from their interrogators during their detention, IranWire reports.
Homan Taheri, one of the detainees in Gilan, suffered injuries during interrogation which resulted in the loss of a tooth. His face was severely swollen, and he exhibited bruises on his neck and chest, along with scratches on various parts of his body. Marks from his abuse persisted even after his transfer to the general ward.
The prosecutor, surnamed Sultani, from Branch 10 of the Rasht Criminal Court overseeing Taheri’s case and that of other detained activists, has meanwhile traveled to Iraq to participate in the Arbaeen Pilgrimage. Families were informed that they currently have no access to him.
Taheri’s mother, Zahra Taherkhani, had previously released a video announcing her son’s arrest and confirming that he was not permitted to meet or contact his family.
Further reports suggest that several other detainees, including Zahra and Zohreh Dadres and Sara Jahani, were subjected to physical abuse by interrogators.
Certain detainees, such as Jelveh Javaheri and Forough Saminia, have also not been granted the right to communicate or meet with anyone since their arrest, which has raised concerns for their well-being.
Based on credible information, each of the detainees who refused to reveal their mobile phone passwords during their arrest was subjected to physical assaults by the officers.
Sara Jahani, a pharmacist at Rasht’s Burn Accident Hospital, was beaten by officers during her arrest for refusing to disclose her phone password.
In the days following the detention of these women’s rights activists, numerous activists have come forward to condemn their arrest.
They have called for the unconditional release of these civil activists, particularly noting the timing of the arrests on the eve of the anniversary of nationwide protests.
They include Mateen Yazdani, Forough Sami-nia, Yasamin Hashdari, Jelveh Javaheri, Zahra Dadras, Zohreh Dadras and Negin Rezaei.
The Iranian government has a long history of silencing and imprisoning women who speak out for their rights.
Anger over the suppression of human rights in Iran has boiled over since the September 2022 death in police custody of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who had been arrested for allegedly wearing a hijab improperly.
The nationwide protest movement appears to have waned in recent months following a bloody crackdown by security forces, but resistance to forced hijab rules remains strong, with images of unveiled women in public spaces being widely shared on social media.
In the lead-up to the anniversary of Mahsa Amini’s death, the government is intensifying efforts to suppress activists, students, teachers and other segments of civil society.