Date of Publish: ۱۶ شهریور ۱۳۸۹

Rights groups condemn arrest of Iranian lawyer

Nasrin Sotoudeh

Reporters Without Borders and the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran condemned the Islamic Republic's arrest of Iranian lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh.

Nasrin Sotoudeh who has been active as the defence lawyer of a number of high-profile political detainees in Iran was arrested on the charge of activities against national security and anti-government propaganda.

Sotoudeh responded to a court summons at the prosecutor’s office located at Evin Prison on September 4, following which her lawyer, Nasim Ghanavi, was informed that she is under arrest.

Reporters Without Borders stated: “Nasrin Sotoudeh has for the past year been the spokesperson of the victims of injustice, of those the regime is trying to silence.”

The press rights group condemns the recent actions of Iranian judiciary saying: “Detained journalists and other political prisoners are denied their most basic rights. Lawyers cannot visit their detained clients or see their case files. Now the repression is being stepped up a notch. By arresting lawyers, the regime is trying to gag the last dissenting voices. Lawyers’ organisations throughout the world must demand this courageous lawyer’s immediate release.”

The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran also issued a statement on Sunday to demand the immediate release of Nasrin Sotoudeh whom they describe as a widely respected lawyer “for her efforts on behalf of juveniles facing the death penalty and for her defense of prisoners of conscience.”

Aaron Rhodes, a spokesperson for the Campaign stated: “This arrest is nothing more than a crude, arbitrary political move to make it more comfortable for the Iranian government to persecute its citizens.”

Sotoudeh had told the Campaign before her arrest that human rights activists are being targeted in more organized fashion by the Islamic Republic and that their “ultimate goal is to shut down all defence of human rights.”

Rhodes urged the Islamic Republic to restore Sotoudeh “to her family and to her vocation” and called on Iranian authorities to end their “illegal attacks against human rights lawyers.”