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An Iranian Mother's Story: "One of my sons is buried, the other one is in Prison"

By Kaveh Ghasemi Kermanshahi, Rooz Online

Ms. Fatemeh Fallah

On December 7th as Kamran Assa, the brother of Kianoosh Assa who died recently, tried to enter Elam va Sanaat University (Science and Industry) to participate in Student Day events, he was arrested by law enforcement agents. This is the university where Kianoosh was working for his Master's degree in petrochemicals. On Student Day, students of this institution wanted to commemorate Koanoosh and so had invited his family members to join them. Kamran's arrest took place less than six months after his brother's death during a protest in Tehran's Azadi circle. Fatemeh Fallah, Kianoosh and Kamran's mother who mourns her dead son spoke with Rooz about Kamran and expressed her "deep" concern.

Kianoosh Assa

Rooz: When and how was Karman arrested?

Mrs. Fallah: He was arrested on December 7 between 10 and 11am at Elm va Sanaat University by law enforcement agents. This happened in the presence of one of our relatives who was Kianoosh's friend. He was released the next day after providing a guarantee, but Kamran has been taken to Evin prison and this makes me very concerned.

Rooz: Had Kamran gone to Tehran for the December 7th commemoration?

Mrs. Fallah: Yes, students and Kianoosh's classmates at the University had invited us to go and take part in the Student Day events when Kianoosh too was supposed to be remembered. As you know, Kianoosh was an outstanding student of this university and was in his last academic term in petrochemical engineering. I could not go to the event because of my illness but Kamran went there on behalf of the family. He had gotten a wreath and a picture of his brother and wanted to take them to the university but before he could even enter the campus, he was arrested along with his companions.

Rooz: Have you heard of Kamran's situation? Do you know where he is?

Mrs. Fallah: No. Except for the first night when he contacted his sister and said that he was under arrest, we have not heard from him and do not know of his condition. But the person who was arrested with Kamran and released the next day said that they wanted to transfer Kamran and some others to Evin prison. I do not know why they did not release my son. What wrongful act has he done? All he wanted to do was to take part in the commemoration events for his brother at the university. He couldn't even make it to the university before he was arrested.

Rooz: What have you done to follow up on Kamran's situation?

Mrs. Fallah: My daughter has spoken with Mr. Nikbakht who is Kianoosh's attorney. And he has said that he cannot do anything at this time. The season holidays have started but we plan to go to Tehran on Saturday to see what we can do. I am confused and do not know what to dol. I do not have anybody in Tehran to follow up on Kamran's situation. Kamran and Kianoosh searched all detention centers and hospitals in Tehran only to find Kianoosh's body at the coroner's office. This time however I will go to Evin prison myself and will remain there until Kamran is freed. I will not leave the place. I no longer have any patience to see my other son be treated similarly. What has he done to deserve this? We are still mourning and they should understand this. We have lost our dearest member. This is not a suffering pain by itself.

Rooz: I do not wish to ask you any more questions because of the pressures you are under but is there something you would like to say?

Mrs. Fallah: I do not know what to say. This is not justice and my family and I be subjected to so much suffering. Kianoosh was the hope of this family. He was an elite member of the scientific community. But we lost him. And now Kamran is in trouble. Don't these people have children of their own to treat the children of others in this manner? What sin have I committed that one of my son's must remain buried under the earth while the other is in prison? Where is their conscience? Kamran has been the bread winner and head of this family. My younger daughter who was emotionally attached to her brother is now emotionally very hurt. And now that Kamran has been arrested she will be suffering further. Forget about me. I have not been able to sleep in the last two nights. As soon as I fall asleep I am awaken by the thoughts of Kianoosh and Kamran.  I am going crazy over what may happen to Kamran. Kamran is a student too. When their father died, Kamran took the responsibility of providing for this family so that Kianoosh and his sisters would continue their schooling. Just two years ago he took the university entrance exams on the insistence of Kianoosh. And he went to the same university where his brother used to go to participate in the commemoration events for Kianoosh. I don't understand how could these people take Kianoosh's wreath and a photograph from a mourning brother and arrest him. I do not wish them to continue making us suffer. We already are mourning but instead of being considerate to us, they come and arrest my other son. Put yourself in my shoes and tell me what am I supposed to do. What can I do? Where can I go? To whom can I tell of my suffering?

... Payvand News - 12/11/09 ... --

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