421 Activists Call on Rouhani to Investigate Prison Assault
In a public letter to President Hassan Rouhani, 421 civil and political activists in Iran called on him to investigate the assault on political prisoners in Evin Prison’s Ward 350, which has now been called “Black Thursday.”
“As members of civil society and political activists, we request that you take a stand against tyranny and injustice against the children of this land within the framework of the law and with the powers you have received by the vote of the people and make an effort to empathize with the victims of these incidents,” they wrote in the letter.
The letter notes that the president is constitutionally obligated to protect citizens’ rights.
“You can instruct the Supreme National Security Council [headed by Rouhani] to form a special truth commission to investigate the April 17 incidents in Evin,” the letter stated.
“By doing so you would be responding to the public’s demands and removing a tumor before it grows and becomes deadly,” it added.
Currently more than thirty political prisoners in Evin’s Ward 350 and six other prisoners in Rajaee Shahr Prison are on hunger strike, protesting last week’s assault on the Ward’s inmates, which left many injured.
“You are surely aware that on the birthday of the Prophet’s daughter, which is Mother’s Day [in Iran], the grieving mothers and wives of Ward 350’s political prisoners were not given gifts but instead naked injustice,” the letter to Rouhani continued.
“You have surely received news of how the imprisoned sons and husbands have been beaten, injured, and subjected to malice. At present, many of them are in solitary confinement and banned from receiving visits from their loved ones.”
The activists also called on the authorities to “at least not tell lies if they cannot tell the truth” about what happened on April 17 in Evin’s Ward 350.
“By forcing all those who had a hand in this incident to voluntarily resign or apologize, you would be setting an example for other officials,” the letter stated.