By Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL
Iran has sentenced the mother of a political prisoner to 23 months in prison apparently for publicizing her son's case in media interviews. Parvin Mokhtare is the mother of human rights activist Kouhyar Goudarzi. Both mother and son have been in jail for the past five months.
Parvin Mokhtare's son is a known human rights activist
Mokhtare has been reportedly convicted of spreading propaganda against the Islamic Republic. She is also facing charges of insulting Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei.
Mokhtare had also apparently protested against the jailing of her son and highlighted his plight in her interviews.
Radio Farda reports that she was arrested in July a few days after security forces took away her son from a friend's house in the Iranian capital. Goudarzi was also jailed in the 2009 postelection crackdown after attending the funeral of Iran's dissident ayatollah, Hossein Ali Montazeri.
Mokhtare is being held in a prison in Kerman. Her son is believed to in solitary confinement in Tehran's Evin prison.
The families of some of Iran's political prisoners have told Persian Letters in the past that they have been warned by authorities not to give media interviews about the plight of their loved ones.
Some families have been detained in recent months for protesting in public and demanding access to their relatives in detention.
A prison sentence for a relative of a political prisoner is however rare.
Copyright (c) 2011 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org
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