Sunday, January 23, 2011

Iran hangs two activists held in 2009 election demos
Mohammad Ali Hajaghaei (left) -  Jafar Kazemi (right)
Mohammad Ali Hajaghaei (left) - Jafar Kazemi (right)
AFP, Tehran, January 24, 2011 - Iran hanged on Monday two activists it said were members of an exiled group opposed to the 2009 presidential poll result, despite US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging that they be freed.
The executions were the first reported hangings of protesters who staged demonstrations against the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a poll they said was rigged.
The Tehran prosecutor’s office named the pair as Jafar Kazemi and Mohammad Ali Hajaghaei. It did not say where the two men were hanged.
'Two elements of the Monafeghin (hypocrites) cell named Jafar Kazemi... and Mohammad Ali Hajaghaei... were executed early today,' the prosecutor’s office said on its website, referring to the Iranian exiled opposition group, People’s Mujahedeen of Iran (PMOI).
On August 10, Clinton had urged the Iranian authorities to release the two activists. The PMOI is on Washington’s list of foreign terrorist organisations.
The prosecutor’s office said 'these two hypocrites were members of an active network of the said cell and were involved in the riots under the guidance of their ringleader in England.'
'The convicts had resorted to distributing pictures and banners related to the Monafeghins, taking photos and films of the clashes as well as chanting slogans in favour of the cell.'
The 2009 presidential election result triggered widespread anti-government demonstrations in Tehran and some other cities.
Dozens of protesters were killed, scores wounded and thousands jailed when security forces clashed with them after the election result, which Ahmadinejad’s rivals claim was rigged in his favour.
Clinton had urged that those rounded up, including Kazemi and Hajaghaei, be freed.
'We are also concerned about the fate of Iranians who are in danger of imminent execution for exercising their right to free expression after the June 2009 elections,' Clinton said on August 10 in a statement, naming Kazemi and Hajaghaei.
'The United States urges the Iranian government to halt these executions in accordance with its obligations to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and calls for the immediate release of all political prisoners and imprisoned human rights defenders.'
Clinton was referring to the 1966 UN treaty on fundamental freedoms, which Iran ratified before the 1979 Islamic revolution overthrew the pro-Western shah.

Women are now banned from going to theatres!!

National Council of Resistance of Iran said in a statement yesterday that, Women in Iran are now banned from watching World Cup and Asian Cup soccer matches in theaters, according to the state-affiliated Khabar Online on Thursday. The website said, women, who are already banned from going to stadiums to watch soccer games are now barred from theaters that screen the matches as well. The decision was apparently taken after the Iranian soccer team played against the UAE this week. The game was screened in three theaters in Tehran.

Workers protest outside Gilan Governorate office

100 workers of the Tabriz Construction Factory staged a gathering outside the governorate office in Gilan protesting unpaid wages for 11 months and lack of New Year bonuses. The workers worked in the cold and heat without any food or shelter, without any complaints, yet the Ministry of Transportation and the Transportation Department are never accountable, said one of the workers.

Disappearance of student activist in Abadan’s Oil University

A student activist in Abadan’s Oil University by the name of Hojjat Arab suspiciously has disappeared since Thursday, January 13th. According to Daneshjoo News, on the morning of that same day, security agents raided his residence, confiscated his computer and laptop after searching the house. From noon of Thursday, there has been no news of Hojjat’s whereabouts, and his mobile is turned off. Under a decision made by the university’s dean, Hojjat was expelled from campus and was not allowed to enter the university premises. Moreover, the university’s ‘Discipline Committee’, under the pretext of activities in ‘Facebook’ and discussions in revolution class, issued the highest and unjust ruling for him, being expulsion from the university and banning from taking classes at the university for 3 years. This ruling has been sent to the Ministry of Sciences for confirmation. It’s been since reported that Hojjat Arabi has been found in Abadan detension center.

Suppressive forces kill 11 in Iranian province

The Iranian regime’s state-run media have reported that agents of the suppressive State Security Forces (SSF) have killed 11 people in the country’s eastern border. According to the state-run Tabnak on Wednesday, Amir Ahmad Geravand, the deputy commander of the SSF border guard said at least three were killed in air and ground raids in Saravan region of the Sistan-va-Balouchestan province. Geravand claimed that one of the families who lost a member as a result of the attack sought to take revenge and gathered arms and ammunition. The others, he said, were killed in recent days in border regions.