Release the Azerbaijani Civil and Cultural Rights Advocates in Iran
Declaration of a Group of Political Prisoners’ Families, Intellectuals, Academics, Civil Movements and Human Rights Activists
Release the Azerbaijani (Civil and Cultural Rights Advocates in Iran)
From the beginning of the spring of this year tens of Azerbaijani civil and cultural rights advocates in different cities including Tabriz, Tehran, Karaj, Urmieh, Ardebil, Miandoab, Makoo, Kaleibar, Meshkinshahr, Khoy and Soofian, have been arrested and imprisoned. Although some of them have been bailed out, yet a group consisting of Hamideh Farajzadeh, Zahra Farajzadeh (women’s rights activists), Akbar Azad (writer and journalist), Hasan Rahimi Bayat (human rights activist), Hosein Nasiri, Dr. Alireza Abdollahi, Dr. Latif Hasani, Mahmood Fazli, Shahram Radmehr, Ayat Mehrali Beigloo, Behbood Gholizadeh, Aydin Khajei, Bahman Nasirzadeh, Heidar Karimi, Naim Ahmadi, Yunes Soleimani and Shokrollah Qahremani Fard – all of them Azerbaijani civil rights activists – have been in solitary confinement averagely for three months. This is while Saeid Matinpoor, Ali Abbasi, Vadud Saadati, Rahim Gholami and Behrooz Alizadeh have been in prison since last year. Lately, also Hanie Farshi Shotorban has been arrested and added to the previous collection.
As we know, many of these detentions have been realized without the presentation of a court injunction, the detainees are kept in solitary cells and are deprived of the right to choose a lawyer. Some have been exposed to severe physical and mental torture and are not allowed to meet or contact their family.
We, besides acknowledging the legitimacy of the Azerbaijanis demanding their cultural, lingual, social, economic, and political rights, believe that the campaign/struggle for achieving democracy is not separated from the campaign for earning the basic rights of residents of the ethnic communities of the country. We severely condemn the discriminatory policies (toward the non-Persian ethnic communities) of the central government of Iran, which have caused relative lag in different regions and have created ethnic gap in the society of Iran.
We believe that the campaign against dictatorship in Iran will not succeed if ignoring the citizenship rights of the Turks, and Kurds, and Arabs, and Baloochs. So, condemning all types of violence, torture, insult, aspersion and trampling of the individual rights of the arrested people, we are requesting the independent media and human rights organizations to through news covering, want their unconditional release and the referring of their cases to a fair and impartial court.