The unrest appears to have resulted in prisoners sustaining injuries, including broken ribs. It has been reported that at least 32 individuals from Section 350 have been transferred to solitary confinement in Section 240 of the prison. According to media reports on the morning of 17 April Ministry of Intelligence officials, along with about 100 guards dressed in riot gear reportedly entered Section 350 of Evin Prison, possibly to conduct a search…”

We have received information that a number of the prisoners were severely wounded and suffered bleeding and fractures. Amongst them Gholamreza Khossravi Savadjani, Assadollah Hadi, Javad Fouladvand and Assadollah Assadi are in critical condition. Assadollah Hadi who recently had open-heart surgery, is in a serious condition. The guards also destroyed all prisoners’ belongings and took with them their handwritten papers.

This latest barbaric act and the 10-month record human rights abuse under President Rouhani, leaves no hope of moderation and reform within the ruling theocracy. After the undemocratic presidential elections many parliamentarians have realised that he is no moderate, since the human rights situation has become worse. Promises of freedom of expression and respect for human rights have failed with over 700 executions since Rouhani’s election. Only a firm policy towards the regime can help the Iranian people who are suffering under this oppression.

On 3rd April the European Parliament adopted a moderately critical resolution on Iran causing a hysterical and unprecedented hostile reaction from the mullahs’ regime. Many Iranian government officials, including the so called “moderate” Foreign Minister, the Speaker of the Majlis (the Iranian Parliament), the chair of the Iranian Parliament’s Security and Intelligence committee, Tehran’s Friday Prayer Leader, numerous members of the Majlis and the overwhelming majority of the media, have mounted relentless attacks on the EU, questioning why the European Parliament has dared to include human rights violations and the anti-democratic behaviour of the regime of Iran in the on-going nuclear discussions.

The hostile reaction is a clear indication that the survival of the Iranian regime is very much dependent on the continuing systematic and grave violation of human rights and that any relaxation of such oppressive activities would accelerate the regime’s overthrow.

We once again call for a firm stance against the policies of the Iranian regime and urge the European Union to make conditional the expansion of its political and economic relations with Iran on the ending of executions and a dramatic improvement of human rights.

We call on Baroness Ashton and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Ms Navi Pillay to conduct an independent, impartial, and thorough investigation into what took place in Evin prison, including why so many prisoners were injured.

Struan Stevenson MEP

Chair, Friends of a Free Iran the European Parliament