Iran News ...


Tehran Raps Washington for Depriving Jailed Iranian Woman of Rights

Source: Fars News Agency, TEhran

A senior Iranian Foreign Ministry official called on Washington to issue entry visas for the family of Shahrzad Mir-Qolikhan, an innocent Iranian woman held in the US jails for the last three years, to let them have a meeting with her, and lambasted the US authorities for depriving Shahrzad of her Vienna Convention rights.

Shahrzad Mir-Qolikhan with her twins (file photo)

"Based on the Vienna Convention, Mrs. Mir-Qolikhan is entitled to certain rights (to have consulate access and meetings with her family), but none of them have yet been materialized," Director-General of the Iranian Foreign Ministry for Iranian Expatriates Nasrollah Tajik told FNA on Saturday.

Tajik referred to the proper behavior Iranian authorities have had with the three US nationals who were arrested by Iran in July 2009 after crossing Iran-Iraq borders illegally, the freedom of Sarah Emily Shourd, one of these three American nationals, and their meetings with their families in Iran, and lamented that the US has failed to provide such facilities for Shahrzad Mir-Qolikhan.

The efforts made by the Iranian foreign ministry officials have just led to the transfer of Shahrzad to another prison after her improper and hard conditions in her previous jail, he explained.

Shahrzad's father told FNA last week that his daughter was sent to a prison in the US state of Oklahoma after more than a month of aggravating conditions in her solitary confinement.

"My daughter had been threatened to death in her former prison several times and suffered from respiratory diseases due to the lack of hygiene and good healthcare," Mir-Qolikhan complained at the time.

Shahrzad was detained in the US in December 2007. Her ex-husband, Mahmoud Seif, had allegedly tried to export night-vision goggles to Iran from Austria.

She was sentenced to five years of imprisonment by a Florida federal court in absentia.

In November, Melika and Melina Mir-Qolikhan, the teenage twin daughters of the innocent Iranian woman, along with their grandmother Rowshan, appeared on the Iranian English language press tv channel and asked Obama to release their innocent mother.


Also earlier, Shahrzad's mother unveiled new details about abuse, torture and cruel treatment of her daughter by the US prison guards and jailors, and stressed that her daughter is held against the law since her retrial in the US violated the international and US laws.

Belqeis Rowshan said in an interview with FNA at the time that her daughter was initially sentenced to 52 days of imprisonment by an Austrian court in 2005 and her case was closed after she served her prison term.

"Again and after a short period, a US court sentenced Shahrzad to five years of imprisonment for the same case, while based on the international laws courts are not allowed to issue two (consecutive) rulings for a single case," Rowshan stated.

"That means that the US action on the case was wrong in essence and they know this," she stressed, reminding that her family attorney also confirm her words.

"Therefore, Shahrzad's detention has been an illegal move and it is now three years that my daughter has been in jail for her attempt to buy a single pair of night-vision goggles," Rowshan explained.

Rowshan further noted the US prison guards' mistreatment of Shahrzad, and said whenever her daughter is allowed to contact the family from the jail, she complains about her jailors' physical and mental tortures and mistreatment.

Also in March, Rowshan said that Shahrzad is suffering from respiratory problems due to the bad healthcare and sanitary conditions at the prison, expressing deep concern about the fate of her daughter.

"Shahrzad, who is suffers respiratory problems as a result of the lack of hygiene and sanitation in the jail was transferred to the prison's clinic last night after her conditions deteriorated," Rowshan told FNA at the time.

The prison accommodating Shahrzad was built in 1938 and is in a very undesirable condition, she mentioned, adding that the molds on prison walls and ceiling have caused respiratory problems for her daughter.

Rowshan also complained about the US officials' indifference to her family's repeated demands for a meeting with Shahrzad at the jail, yet she said that her family members have, nevertheless, sent their passports and related documents to the US authorities to receive a visa for travelling to the US, reiterating that the family would spare no effort to help Shahrzad in any possible way.

In September former Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said that Tehran has prepared a list of Iranian nationals who are in US jails for false charges, and added that he is closely pursuing the issue.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the 65th session of the UN General Assembly, Mottaki said that the issue of the Iranian captives would be one of the main topics that he would discuss with the UN chief, Ban Ki-moon, during his visit to the UN headquarters.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad also said in September that the US has recently detained and held eight Iranian nationals illegally and based on false allegations.

President Ahmadinejad said in an interview with the Russian TV that the Iranian captives were arrested in third countries by US agents under "false accusations" and transferred here to US jails.

"This is abduction and does not fit in with any legal system. They (Iranians) had traveled to other countries with official visas but were arrested by Americans," Ahmadinejad stated at the time.

"Americans have not observed the international law. They should review their conduct and allow the detainees to return home."

Related Video: Shahrzad twins call for mom's release

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