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Iran jail attack alleged

02 May 2014


Vociferous: Iranian women demonstrate opposite Downing Street, on Saturday 

Vociferous: Iranian women demonstrate opposite Downing Street, on Saturday 

IRANIAN protesters dressed in prison-style uniforms cowered behind makeshift bars near the entrance to Downing Street on Saturday, in a re-enactment of an attack on prisoners which is said to have taken place on Maundy Thursday in Evin prison, Tehran.

The drama was staged to draw attention to the plight of the occupants of Ward 350 in Evin, where many political prisoners are held.

A statement from Lord Carlile of Berriew, who co-chairs the Parliamentary Committee for Iran Freedom, was read out on Saturday. It said that prisoners were "savagely attacked" over the course of five hours by "100 revolutionary guards, intelligence elements, and the prison's special anti-riot guards".

Prisoners were "severely wounded and suffered severe bleeding and broken bones in the head and ribs". The attacks had been "mainly directed" at those who were charged with affiliation with the People's Mojahedeen Organisation of Iran (PMOI), an outlawed Iranian opposition group, it said.

On Wednesday of last week, Christian Solidarity Worldwide reported that Farshid Fathi, an Evangelical church leader, was among those injured. Amnesty International says that at least 32 prisoners have been transferred to solitary confinement.

On Saturday, Elaheh Azimfar, from the National Council of Resistance in Iran, said that the attack was the climax of a campaign of harrassment against political prisoners that began last month. The Council is demanding that the Red Cross be permitted to visit the prisoners, and that the UN conduct an independent inquiry into events.

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