AI appeals for release of Mohammad Maleki, Iranian scholar and former Chancellor of Tehran University
Amnesty International Urgent Action
Dr Mohammad Maleki
Dr Mohammad Maleki, a 76-year old male Iranian scholar and former
Chancellor of Tehran University has been detained. An independent commentator,
he has for many years criticized the policies of successive governments. He is
believed to be held for criticizing the conduct of the recent presidential
election and therefore to be a prisoner of conscience.
Dr Mohammad Maleki was arrested at his home on 22 August by five Ministry of
Intelligence officials. They searched his house and confiscated personal effects
including a computer, a mobile phone, notebooks and up to 80 books. The
officials filmed the search and upon completion Dr Mohammad Maleki was detained.
It has been reported that he was taken to section 209 of Evin Prison in Tehran,
which is under the control of the Ministry of Intelligence.
Dr Mohammad Maleki was in poor health at the time of his arrest, reportedly
recovering from a serious illness and unable to walk unaided due to severe pain
in his legs. He also suffers from prostate cancer, an abnormal heartbeat and
diabetes. He was permitted to take medicines with him when arrested, but there
are concerns that he may not be able to obtain adequate medical care in prison.
The Iranian authorities frequently deny or delay medical care, including
medication, to detainees as a form of pressure on them. Concerned about his weak
state of health, Dr Mohammad Maleki's wife, Ghodsi Mir Moez, has urged him to
co-operate fully with security officials and to take part in a televised
"conversation" if Ministry of Intelligence officials want him to do so.
"Confessions" obtained in this way have repeatedly been aired following recent
Dr Mohammad Maleki is not affiliated to any political party and is said to have
not voted in the disputed 12 June presidential election in Iran. He criticized
the conduct of the elections but did not publicly express a view about any one
of the four candidates that stood for election.
PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY in Persian, Arabic, English or your own language:
Expressing concern that Dr Mohammad Maleki has been detained for criticizing the
conduct of the recent presidential election and calling, if this is the case,
for his immediate and unconditional release;
calling for him to be protected from torture and other ill-treatment while in
urging the authorities to grant him immediate access to his lawyer, family and
any medical treatment he may need.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 14 OCTOBER 2009 TO:
Leader of the Islamic Republic
Ayatollah Sayed 'Ali Khamenei
The Office of the Supreme Leader
Islamic Republic Street - End of Shahid Keshvar Doust Street, Tehran, Islamic
Republic of Iran
Email: via website:
Salutation: Your Excellency
Head of the JudiciaryDr Mohammad Maleki was the first Chancellor of the University of Tehran
following the 1979 revolution and has previously been detained on several
occasions for the peaceful exercise of his right to freedom of expression. He
was imprisoned before the revolution for speaking out against the last Shah of
Iran, then between 1982 and 1987, after which he was forbidden to leave Iran for
at least several years. He was briefly detained in 2001.
Ayatollah Sadeqh Larijani
Howzeh Riyasat-e Qoveh Qazaiyeh (Office of the Head of the Judiciary)
Pasteur St., Vali Asr Ave., south of Serah-e Jomhouri, Tehran 1316814737,
Islamic Republic of Iran
Email: Via website:
http://www.dadiran.ir/tabid/81/Default.aspx First starred box: your given
name; second starred box: your family name; third: your email address
Salutation: Your Excellency
And copies to:
Speaker of Parliament
His Excellency Ali Larijani
Majles-e Shoura-ye Eslami
Baharestan Square, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Fax: +98 21 3355 6408
In the days following the 13 June 2009 announcement that incumbent Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad had won the presidential election, hundreds of thousands of Iranians
took part in mass and generally peaceful demonstrations throughout the country,
disputing the election results. The authorities quickly imposed sweeping
restrictions on freedom of expression, association and assembly and
telecommunication and internet systems were severely disrupted. Iranian
publications were banned from publishing information about the nationwide unrest
and foreign journalists were banned from the streets, their visas not renewed
and others arrested or expelled from the country.
In response to the mass protests, security forces, notably the paramilitary
Basij, were widely deployed. At least 4,000 arrested in the three to four weeks
following the 12 June 2009 election, including prominent political figures close
to either presidential candidates Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, or
former President Khatami, who supported Mir Hossein Mousavi's campaign. Some
human rights defenders and journalists were also detained. They have been denied
access to legal representation, but have generally been able to meet family
Security forces used excessive and lethal force against demonstrators, killing
dozens of protestors and injuring hundreds more. Some died later of their
injuries. Others have been injured and died as a result of torture while in
Mass trial sessions of hundreds starting on 1 August 2009 were grossly unfair,
including the latest of which was held on 25 August. Detainees "confessed" to
vaguely worded charges, which are often not recognizably criminal offences.
These "confessions", apparently obtained under duress, were accepted by the
court. Some of those on trial were filmed making similar "confessions", which
were aired on TV before their trials took place. Some of those on trial could
face the death penalty.
Iranian officials have confirmed that at least some of those detained after the
post-election protests have been tortured or otherwise ill-treated, and that
abuses took place in at least one detention centre, Kahrizak, a centre outside
of Tehran. On 29 July, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei ordered its closure
and the head of a detention facility and three guards, thought to have worked at
the Kahrizak detention centre, were reportedly dismissed and possibly detained.
On 15 August, Parviz Sorouri, the Head of the Special Parliamentary Committee to
review post-election arrests, told the Islamic Labour News Agency that 12 police
officials and a judge who had been involved in transferring detainees to
Kahrizak would be arrested and tried for their role, "as the detention centre
was intended for drug dealers".
Amnesty International has received reports consistent with a statement made by
Mehdi Karroubi that both women and male detainees have been subjected to
torture, including by rape, by security officials. His allegations were
initially denied by Farhad Tajari, a member of the Special Parliamentary
Committee, but, on 26 August 2009, another of the Committee's members told the
website Parleman News on condition of anonymity, "It has definitely become
evident to us that some of the post-election detainees have been raped with
batons and bottles."
... Payvand News - 09/04/09 ... --