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Center for Advocates of Human Rights protests to Iran's Judiciary for arrest warrant against lawyer

Tehran, July 30, IRNA-Center for Advocates of Human Rights on Saturday protested to the Judiciary against arrest warrant the body issued for lawyer Abdolfattah Soltani.

Soltani is one of the founders of the Center for Advocates of Human Rights and has undertaken the duty of defense lawyer for journalist Akbar Ganji and photojournalist Zahra Kazemi who died in custody in 2003.

The Center said in a statement that according to respective law only the Lawyers Disciplinary Court is entitled to issue arrest warrant against the lawyers.

"The Center for Advocates of Human Rights is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) advocating human rights in accordance with its charter," the statement said.

"Policemen with arrest warrant confiscated several documents from Soltani's house without writing a list of what they took with them," said the statement.

"The Judiciary's action is in contravention of Article 6 of the Law concerning independence of lawyers passed by legislature in 1955." "According to Article 14 of the law, any allegation against lawyers should be examined by Lawyers Disciplinary Court and Article 5 of the Law specified that only the Disciplinary Court of the Lawyers is entitled to issue any arrest warrant against lawyers," the statement said.

The Center said that the Judiciary has committed illegal action by issuing arrest warrant against the lawyer.

Lawyer Soltani forwarded an open complaint to Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi for violation of respective law about procedure of issuing arrest warrant against lawyers and asked for a probe by the Judiciary chief.

Meanwhile, he has gone on sit-in protest against confiscation of documents and breaking into his house.

He said that policemen broke drawers of wardrobe and took with them several tapes, documents and other materials disrupting his household appliances.

Soltani said that he thinks the action has been taken against him for his duty as defense lawyer adding that he would continue sit-in protest until the Judiciary chief clarify the situation.

IRNA reporter asked Judiciary spokesman Jamal Karimirad about the arrest warrant, he said that the matter is under investigation.

... Payvand News - 7/30/05 ... --

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