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Iran: Mother says she is proud of jailed women rights activists

"We are Proud of Raheleh and Nasim for their Commitment to Women's Rights" Claims Raheleh's Mother

Change for Equality, Tehran - Raheleh Asgarizadeh and Nasim Khosravi contacted their family members on Sunday February 17, 2008 to inform them that they had been transferred to Evin's public ward 3.

Ali Vaezipour, Nasim's husband explains: "Nasim called me last night and today from prison. She was in good spirits and explained that female prisoners there are treating her and Raheleh very well."

In relation to the bail amount set for Nasim, Mr. Vaezipour explains: "I am a general physician and with limited income, so I cannot come up with the 20 million Tomans (roughly $22000) bail amount set for her release. As such, I will try to convince the courts to reduce the bail amount to a third-party guarantee."

Ghazaleh Asgarizadeh, Raheleh's sister, who had gone to the Revolutionary courts on Sunday to follow the case of her sister, explains: "they have not given us a definite answer in relation to my sister's case and we were not allowed to visit the judge in charge of Raheleh's case. In this respect, the court officials explained to us that a case number for her case has yet to be issued. My sister and her friends haven't done anything, besides advocating for the rights of women."

Raheleh Asgarizadeh's mother who is also a member of the Mother's Committee of the Campaign, explains: "my husband and I are proud of Raheleh, for her activism on behalf of women's rights and her own rights as a woman. Because I too work with the Campaign, I understand that we must pay a price to bring about change and I am willing to endure these consequences."

Raheleh's mother explains further: "Raheleh has not committed a crime for which we now have to post a high bail amount. Her father insists that we wait until her innocence is proven, and the judge reduces her bail amount to a third-party guarantee."

In their telephone contact from prison, Raheleh Asgarizadeh and Nasim Khosravi, spoke of the kind treatment they had received from fellow inmates as well as prison guards. In this short time since their transfer to Prison, Raheleh and Nasim have put many of the female inmates in touch with lawyers working with the Campaign, so that they too can benefit from appropriate legal representation.

Nasrin Sotoodeh, Shirin Ebadi and Leila Alikarami are the lawyers representing Raheleh and Nasim.

Raheleh and Nasim were arrested on February 14, 2008 while collecting signatures in Park Daneshjoo following a street play on the subject of women's rights. They were transferred to Evin Prison on Saturday February 16, 2008.

Transfer of Raheleh Asgarizadeh and Nasim Khosravi to Evin Prison

Change for Equality: February 16, 2008: Raheleh Asgarizadeh and Nasim Khosravi, two members of the Campaign who were arrested on Thursday February 14, 2007, were charged with "propaganda against the state" and transferred to Evin prison on the afternoon of February 16, 2008. The two women's rights activists had been transferred from Vozara detention center to the Revolutionary Courts earlier this morning, where they were charged and a bail of 20 Million Tomans (roughly $22,000) was set for their release. Unable to provide the bail, the two were handcuffed and transferred to Evin prison. These two women's rights activists were arrested while collecting signatures in Daneshjoo Park, after attending a street theatre, on the subject of women's rights.

Prior to their transfer from the Courts, Raheleh and Nasim had an opportunity speak with their friends and family who were waiting outside the court house. Raheleh and Nasim used this time to tell their friends about the two nights they spent in detention, and their conversations with other female prisoners and guards about women's rights and the demands of the Campaign. During their court hearing, they were asked by the judge to explain what laws they objected to and why they thought these laws to be discriminatory in nature. In response Raheleh and Nasim spoke to the judge and told him stories about the discrimination that women endure because of the law.

With the arrest of Raheleh and Nasim Khosravi, the number of women's rights defenders arrested in direct relation to their peaceful activities in support of the Campaign, has reached 43 persons. These women's rights activists have been arrested because of their demand for equality. At the same time, activists in the Campaign, maintain that the expression of these demands is not in violation of any national law and the activities of the Campaign are carried out in the most peaceful manner.

Campaign Members Raheleh Asgarizadeh and Nasim Khosravi Arrested

Change for Equality: February 15, 2008: Raheleh Asgarizadeh and Nasim Khosravi, two members of the One Million Signatures Campaign were arrested on the afternoon of February 14th, in Daneshjoo Park, while collecting signatures in support of the Campaign's petition. After their arrest, these two women's rights activists were taken to police station 129 (Jaami) and then transferred to the security police station number 8 for interrogation. Upon completion of their interrogation they were transferred to Vozara detention center.

After hours of waiting in front of the police station in the hopes of finding out about the status of these two women's rights activists, their families suspecting that the women had been transfered to another location, decided to inquire about their whereabouts by going to several detention centers. Finally, at midnight on February 15th, family members discovered that the two women had been transferred to Vozara detention center.

On the morning of February 15th, Raheleh and Nasim were taken to the Revolutionary Courts, but the on-duty judge was not available, so they were transferred back to Police Station 8, where they will be held, until it is determined which detention center they will be transferred to.

Raheleh and Nasim are both active members of the Campaign in Tehran and members of the arts and media committees.

... Payvand News - 02/22/08 ... --

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