The Iranian Judiciary sentenced political prisoner Forough Taghipour to five years in prison for supporting the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK/PMOI), following an extended period where her fate was kept in limbo. Taghipour’s sister is an MEK member at Ashraf 3 in Albania.
Taghipour, 25, was arrested alongside her mother Nasim Jabbari, as well as Zahra Safaei and her daughter, Parastoo Moeini, on February 24, 2020, and all four were taken to Evin Prison Ward 209 for two months of interrogation.
In April, they were moved to Qarchak prison, where they’ve been harassed and beaten by agents on the orders of the prison warden. It was there that Taghipour became ill with COVID-19 due to a lack of safety precautions.
Of course, this is far from the only abuse of political prisoners in Iran in recent days.
Political prisoner Afshin Baymani, who has so far spent 21 years in Gohardasht Prison, was moved to the prison clinic on March 11 for severe chest pain, but he was not allowed to visit a hospital, even though the doctor recommended it.
Baymani was sentenced to life imprisonment after being arrested in September 2000 for assisting his brother Mehdi, an MEK member who has since been martyred.
While imprisoned teacher Esmail Abdi was moved without warning from Evin to Gohardasht Prison on March 13. He was handcuffed, put in a vehicle with several dangerous criminals, and taken to a Karaj courthouse, supposedly because he didn’t have a transfer order from the Special Prosecutor for Political Prisoners, Amin Vaziri.
Abdi was arrested in 2015 and sentenced to six years in prison the following year. Prison guards stopped him calling his family, and shortly afterwards, he protested with a hunger strike. He was then only allowed to see his family if an interrogator was present.
On March 10, political prisoner Pouya Ghobadi was moved to the Great Tehran Penitentiary’s (GTP) COVID-19 ward on the order of GTP director Hamid Reza Fathi after Ghobadi protested the guards’ maltreatment of sick prisoners.
The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) called on the United Nations Secretary-General, High Commissioner for Human Rights and Human Rights Council, as well as other human rights groups to “take immediate action to secure the release of all political prisoners” and “send an international commission of inquiry to visit Iranian prisons and meet with the prisoners, particularly the political prisoners”.