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Iran: Commissioner for Human Rights Policy calls for rights for imprisoned blogger

12.09.2013

In light of recent news of the rapidly deteriorating state of health of the political prisoner Hossein Ronaghi Maleki who has been on hunger strike in Tehran’s Evin prison for the past month, Federal Government Human Rights Commissioner Markus Löning issued the following statement today (12 September 2013):

Reports about the imprisoned Iranian blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki fill me with deep concern. His case is another sign that prisoners in Iran often either do not receive urgently needed medical care, or receive it too late. Likewise, approval for necessary follow up treatment or medical leave from prison is not granted to an adequate degree.

This contravenes the provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Iran has ratified. I call on the Iranian Government and the competent judicial agencies to fulfil their obligation to treat all prisoners in a humane and dignified manner.

Background

The Iranian blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki was arrested on 13 December 2009 during the unrest which followed the controversial presidential elections, and was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment in a trial lacking in transparency. He has repeatedly gone on hunger strike in protest against the conditions in which political prisoners are held. He suffers from severe kidney, gastro intestinal, bladder and heart problems, which according to his statements, result from torture he endured in prison. Since 9 August 2013 he has once again been on hunger strike. According to reports from human rights organisations, after a brief stay in hospital on 28 August 2013 he was not granted medical leave despite his doctor’s diagnosis that his state of his health was rapidly deteriorating. Corresponding applications made by his parents to the public prosecutor have been rejected.

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