Archiv für den Tag 6. Juni 2012

IRGC Agents Stormed Hunger Striker Blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki’s Hospital Room

Sepah intelligence agents (IRGC) stormed Hossein Ronaghi Maleki’s hospital room today. Hossein who was hospitalized in critical condition due to complications from his hunger strike was transferred to a different room in the same hospital and was banned him from visit. They also threatened his family not to publish any information about Hossein’s condition.

According to reports by Kalameh, few hours ago, Sepha Intelligence agents stormed Hossein’s room in Hasheminejad hospital, ordered the Intelligence Ministry’s agents and Hossein’s parents to leave the room, they then moved Hossein to a different room in the same hospital.

The Seopah intelligence agents did not give any reason for their action, neither did they give any explanation or information about his new location. They also prevented Hossein’s family from visiting him in his new room saying that they could only visit him during scheduled visiting times.

At the same time, agents called Hossein’s brother and threatened him to remain silent about Hossein’s condition.

Hossein Ronaghi was transferred to hospital on Sunday night in critical condition, however, he has refused to be connected to an IV and has refused to break his hunger strike despite the danger of loosing his kidney.

This blogger who has been incarcerated for two and a half years without being granted furlough, believes having additional surgery without being granted a medical furlough for post-operation treatment is pointless and therefore refuses additional surgery and will remain on a hunger strike until medical furlough is granted.

His family are worried that if the current conditions continue, it will eventually lead to a bitter and disastrous event.

A number of political prisoners incarcerated in Ward 350 released a statement yesterday which was published by Kalameh site. In this statement they warned that ignoring Hossein’s situation could put his life in serious danger.

They referred to a similar case of another political prisoner, Hoda Saber, who lost his life on hunger strike in prison, due to lack of proper medical treatment.

In this statement they also mention the medical examiner’s ruling that Hossein Ronaghi’s health is too dire to tolerate remaining imprisoned. They also mentioned the physicians recommendations for Hossein’s need to be granted medical furlough after surgery for proper care and treatment.

Hossein Ronaghi Maleki launched a hunger strike last week. He announced the launch of his hunger strike in a letter to the Leader. In this letter he explained the reason for his hunger strike and said, ” “I protest these illegal practices by launching a hunger strike as of May 26, 2012 and protecting my life is the responsibility of the officials of the Islamic Republic.

This hunger strike is in protest of, and to make a complaint about: The abuse and interventions in judicial matters by the Sepah Intelligence Corps, and the Intelligence Ministry. The loss of independence of the Judiciary Branch. To restore the Constitution, Judicial procedures, judicial independence, and; To restore the rights of political prisoners and their families (rights such as, use of furlough, use of telephone and visitation right and etc.).”

Kalameh reported yesterday that Hossein Ronaghi is under pressure to brake his hunger strike and has been threatened with being transfered back to prison. They also have threatened him with a negative media campaign against him.

Despite all of this, Hossein remains steadfast on his demand and says unless he is granted a medical furlough he will not brake his hunger strike.

Also, previously prison officials had said that they will cover all of his medical expenses, but they have recanted that statement and now say they can not cover his expenses due to Hasheminejad hospital not being under contract with them.

This blogger and human rights activist has been incarcerated for two and a half years without being allowed any furlough. He was arrested on December 13, 2009 in the city of Makan near Tabriz, and was immediately taken to Ward 2-A of Evin prison in Tehran.

Source: Kalameh

UANI Applauds Bureau Veritas for Ending Its Certification of Iranian Vessels and Oil Tankers

Following UANI Campaign, French Shipping Service Pledges to Cut All Ties to Iran

New York, NY – Today, United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) applauded the French shipping service, Bureau Veritas, for pledging to end its certification of Iranian shipping vessels, specifically those of the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines („IRISL“) and the National Iranian Tanker Company („NITC“).

UANI contacted Bureau Veritas last week, noting that its certification activities were in violation of EU sanctions. UANI launched its Shipping Certification Campaign in early May.

Following subsequent consultations with UANI, Bureau Veritas pledged that it has „decided to disengage completely from all Marine activities related to Iran.“ Bureau Veritas assured UANI that this pledge specifically includes „all vessels of the IRISL and of its subsidiaries, irrespective of their flags,“ as well as all NITC vessels.

Said UANI CEO, Ambassador Mark D. Wallace:

We applaud Bureau Veritas for ending its certification of Iranian vessels. We accept Bureau Veritas’s pledge to end all of its marine activities related to Iran, and we thank the company’s executives for taking this quick and responsible action.

The international community must focus specifically on the shipping industry, to deny the Iranian regime access to global trade and seaborne crude oil exports. Aligned nations should prohibit all international cargo shippers that service Iranian ports from shipping to the U.S., EU and elsewhere. By cutting off Iran’s shipping access, the world can further isolate the regime and hamper its nuclear program and support for terrorists.

UANI has highlighted the shipping industry as an area where the international community can further pressure Iran. In a March 17 Wall Street Journal Op-Ed, six UANI board members wrote that „the world must deny Iran’s access to international shipping, a move that would severely affect the regime given its dependence on global trade and seaborne crude oil exports. Aligned nations should prohibit international cargo shippers that service Iranian ports… from shipping to the U.S., EU and elsewhere.“

Click here to read UANI’s full letter to Bureau Veritas.

Click here to read UANI’s Wall Street Journal Op-Ed, „Total Sanctions Might Stop Iran.“

Click here to visit UANI’s „Shipping Campaign“ page.

Deutschland: Verhandlungsgliederung zur muendlichen Verhandlung des Ersten Senats des Bundesverfassungsgerichts in Sachen Asylbewerberleistungsgesetz/Grundleistungen am 20. Juni 2012

A. Einführende Stellungnahmen
                                                   ca. 10.00 - 10.30 Uhr

B. Zulässigkeit der konkreten Normenkontrollen 

C. Begründetheit der konkreten Normenkontrollen
                                                   ca. 10.30 - 12.00 Uhr

    I. Gewährleistung eines menschenwürdigen Existenzminimums 
       ausweislich des Grundgesetzes

       Welche Vorgaben ergeben sich aus dem Grundgesetz, auch für den 
       Gesetzgeber hinsichtlich der Gewährleistung eines 
       menschenwürdigen Existenzminimums? Was ergibt sich mit Blick auf 
       Europarecht und Völkerrecht? Was ergibt sich daraus konkret für 
       das Existenzminimum von Menschen, die nicht dauerhaft in 
       Deutschland leben? 

   II. Die Leistungshöhe (evident unzureichend?) und deren Berechnung 
       (transparent, nachvollziehbar, realitätsgerecht?) einschließlich 
       eventueller Besonderheiten im Geltungsbereich des AsylbLG

       Ist der Lebensunterhalt mit den derzeitigen Grundleistungen 
       gesichert? Was spricht dafür, was dagegen, diese als evident 
       unzureichend zu bewerten? Welche Bedarfe sind gedeckt, welche 

       Differenziert nach
       a) Erwachsenen (Haushaltsvorstand, Haushaltsangehörige)
       b) Kindern und Jugendlichen (bis 7 Jahre, 8 bis 14 Jahre, 15 bis 
          17 Jahre)

       Wie stellt sich die Beibehaltung der Sätze in § 3 AsylbLG 
       angesichts der seit 1993 bestehenden Preissteigerungen dar? 
       Warum ist von Anpassungspflichten (z.B. der 
       Verordnungsermächtigung in § 3 Abs. 3 AsylbLG) nie Gebrauch 
       gemacht worden? Gibt es Gründe, im Rahmen des AsylbLG von der 
       Berechnung für Leistungen nach dem SGB II und SGB XII abzuweichen? 

D. Einschätzung der Folgen einer eventuellen Verfassungswidrigkeit der 
   vorgelegten Regelungen
                                                   ca. 12.00 - 12.30 Uhr

   Wer trägt die Finanzierungslast der Leistungen nach dem AsylbLG?

E. Abschließende Stellungnahmen
                                                   ca. 12.30 - 13.00 Uhr

Eye on Iran: Iran Accuses IAEA of Spying, Says It Will Never Halt Enrichment

Top Stories

Bloomberg: „Iran accused the United Nations nuclear inspectorate of spying, vowed never to suspend uranium enrichment and cast doubt on whether a deal allowing wider atomic inspections is possible. ‚Iran will resist to the end‘ and ‚will not permit our national security to be jeopardized‘ by International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors working for Western intelligence agencies, the Persian Gulf nation’s IAEA envoy, Ali Asghar Soltanieh, said today at a press briefing in Vienna. ‚Iran will never suspend its enrichment activities,‘ he said… ‚The agency, which is supposed to be an international technical organization, is somehow playing the role of an intelligence agency,‘ Soltanieh said.“

Reuters: „Iran’s top crude oil buyers in Asia have just weeks to come up with ways to keep imports flowing without falling foul of the toughest Western sanctions to date against Tehran’s oil trade. Solutions have proved elusive so far. A year ago, Iran was selling around two-thirds of its crude exports, or roughly 1.45 million barrels per day, to China, Japan, India and South Korea, securing vital flows of foreign exchange for a government many Western nations accuse of running a secret nuclear weapons program. Those imports have already dropped by about a fifth after the European Union and the United States drew up fresh sanctions, and they could drop further after the end of this month when those financial restrictions come into force. South Korean refineries have already given up, industry sources said. They will switch to other sources of crude supply from July 1. China, India and Japan are scrambling to deal with the biggest headache – an EU ban on insuring shipments of Iranian crude from July 1 – and are considering sovereign guarantees… So far this year, South Korea and India have imported 10 percent less Iranian crude compared to a year ago, while Japan and China have taken around 30 percent less.“  Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Help stop imminent execution of Hamid Ghassemi-Shall

A Canadian is facing imminent execution in Iran. He desperately needs you to intervene.

Take action for

Hamid’s story

Hamid Ghassemi-Shall faces imminent execution in Iran.

Hamid was arrested in late May 2008 while visiting his mother in Iran. This arrest took place approximately two weeks after the arrest of his brother, Alborz Ghassemi-Shall.

In November 2009, Antonella Mega, Hamid’s wife in Canada received reports that both Hamid and Alborz were convicted of espionage and sentenced to death. The legal proceedings were deeply unfair and neither Hamid or Alborz had a meaningful opportunity to defend themselves. His conviction appears to be based on a document of an alleged email exchange between Hamid and Alborz. Hamid has unequivocally stated that the document is a complete fabrication and that he never sent any such message. Testing and analysis by his lawyer reportedly confirm that to be the case.

Hamid and Alborz were in solitary confinement for 18 months until the end of November 2009 when they were transferred to a general population section in Tehran’s Evin prison. On 20 January 2010 Alborz died in prison, reportedly of stomach cancer. Mr. Hamid Ghassemi-Shall reported that both he and Alborz were subject to “extreme pressure” during their detention.

Hamid Ghassemi-Shall was sentenced to death. His case has undergone a number of reviews, but the family confirmed in March 2012 that the death sentence has not been lifted.

On May 30 the House of Commons unanimously endorsed an urgent appeal to the Government of Iran to grant clemency to Hamid Ghassemi-Shall; called for his release and return to his family and spouse in Canada, and urged Iran to adhere to its international human rights obligations. Read more about the house of commons decision in The Toronto Star.

Thank you for your willingness to speak out to save a man’s life.   Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Islamic Republic Must Stop Its Campaign Against Afghan Refugees

Justice For Iran (JFI) Report to the UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Iran:

Urge Iran to Stop Its Latest Campaign Against Afghan Refugees


Justice For Iran (JFI): The countdown has started for Afghans in Iran. According to the director of the Bureau of Alien and Foreign Immigrant Affairs (BAFIA), since the moratorium issued on determining the residency status of Afghan refugees in Iran is ending, single Afghan men residing in the provinces of Tehran, Isfahan and Razavi Khorasan must leave the country by June 20, 2012.

This is only the latest steps in the Islamic Republic of Iran’s continuous discrimination against Afghan refugees residing inside Iran. In a report released today, Iran: an Afghan Free Zone?!, Justice For Iran demands  the UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Iran to urge both Iranian government and the UNHCR make their entire plans clear and abandon their inhumane policy towards Afghans.

In March 2012, during Norooz, the most widely celebrated New Year festival in Central Asia, the director of the Committee to Enforce Ease of Travel in Isfahan announced that for Sizdeh Beh Dar (a traditional celebration 13 days after Norooz during which individuals are supposed to spend the entire day in a picnic outside of their homes), a ban would be issued for the entry of Afghan nationals into Saffeh Mountain Park “for the welfare of the Iranian citizens” and “to preserve security of the families.” National and international outrage followed this decision. However, instead of retreating, Iranian officials continued to pursue their campaign of discrimination against Afghans residing in Iran. In April 2012, the director of BAFIA’s office in Mazandaran Province announced that the province was off limits to Afghan refugees. Calling it a “cleansing,” Shafi’i considered the presence of Afghan refugees to be a threat to the Province and stated that “since Mazandaran is a tourist attraction, it cannot withstand the presence of these [foreign] nationals.”

As early as 2002, the Iranian government announced residential restrictions imposed on Afghan nationals living in Iran. More and more provinces were announced to be off limits to Afghan nationals.  Banning residence in a province for Afghan nationals meant that those who were living in that province, some of who have been there for years, had to relocate to another approved location and try to start a new life.

According to the political and security deputy to the Governor of Mazandaran, only in this province alone, 3,040 Afghan refugees were arrested and deported to Afghanistan over the last Iranian calendar year.  Upon the enforcement of this law, it is unclear what became of the Iranian women married to Afghan nationals. Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Urgent letter about five journalist and several Human Rights Activist in Turkey

Respected United Nations General Secretary, UN High Commissionaire for Refugees and Respected Foreign Ministers of Countries who Support Human Rights

Iranian journalists are amongst those who have become victims of human rights abuse, as a result of their work in promoting human rights in Iran and have been oppressed by the Iran’s security agents and judiciary judges. Journalists whose writings and ideas for peace have made them targets for human rights abusers.

In recent years, some very disturbing stories have been reported on the status of independent media and journalists, which require urgent attention. The International Federation of Journalists and also other human rights organizations including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, have described the situation of journalists in Iran to be worrying and complicated and they have stated the intimidation of journalists in recent years has been the worst ever.

Reporters Without Borders have said Iran continues to have the largest number of journalists in prison and have named Iran as the biggest prison of journalists.

The increasing pressure on journalists by the security agents follows no laws and rules and this has forced many of them to leave their motherland, against their will, to seek refuge in neighboring countries and ask for asylum from UN High Commissionaire for Refugees. Many are currently incarcerated and those seeking asylum face heavy sentences if they return to Iran.

It is with much sadness that I have learned many Iranian journalists who have fled to Turkey, are living under very difficult conditions there. Many Human Rights and political activists as well as journalists face the same uncertainty.

Iranian security agents have threatened some of them on numerous occasions and caused them anxiety.

Lack of security in Turkey has caused me to write this letter to you, so that Iranian journalists and human rights activists who are residing in Turkey can be helped by whatever means possible and transferred to safer countries.

If we can support human rights, then we must support human rights activists too, who truly have paid the price for their beliefs with their lives and freedoms to make the voices of the victims of human rights abuse heard.

It is very sad that the renowned Iranian Journalists, Hadi Nili, who for years has been harassed and interrogated by the intelligence ministry agents, has remained in Turkey for over two years and has not been able to reach freedom.

Truly, the ongoing uncertainty and overdue stay of such people and others, whom I will name below, in an unsafe country for them, like Turkey is just, added torture for them.

Behrooz Samad Beigi has been living in a worrying condition for more than 13 months.

Hamid Mafi and his wife, Maryam Akbari, have been living in terrible conditions for more than 10 months and have been threatened on numerous occasions.

Ehsanollah Mehrabi and his wife have been exiled to a village near Syria and their situation is very worrying.

Mehdi Tajik Ghashghaei, one of the seasoned Iranian journalists has got to wait for his first UN interview until July 2013.

Alireza Firouzi, a young tireless human rights activist has to wait until February 2013 for his case to be heard by UN officials. Also Mr. Farhad Nouri Koochi.
Mr. Koochi entered Van in Turkey on 09/21/2011. Subsequent to his
registration with UNHCR on 09/16/2011, his first interview was
scheduled for 12/16/2011. However, due to the earthquake in Van, his
interview was cancelled.  Unfortunately, Mr. Koochi still has NOT
heard anything from UNHCR regarding rescheduling his interview date.

Mr. Koochi is a human rights activist and an active member of the
Nematollahi Gonabadi Dervishes,and Mr. Kouchi who is administrator of  Nematollahi Gonabadi Order News Site “ Majzooban Noor  a recognized religious minority Sufi
group that has been subject to mass arrests and persecution in Iran. Unfortunately there are a lot of Human Rights activist like Mr. Babak Ejlali and Homayon Naderifar who need to your help.

Let me emphasise again, if we are able to defend the rights of journalists and Human Rights activist, we should defend them wherever and whenever we can. Today these people need our help. I ask you to help these people by transferring them to a safe country and improving their situation, so that they can continue to help improve the situation of their people.

With much gratitude

Mohammad Mostafaei

Human Rights Lawyer and Activist

Opinion | Sounding the Wrong School Alarm in Iran


The real issue isn’t access, it’s the questionable benefits of formal schooling for the average Iranian child.

In an item posted on his blog Monday, Prof. Djavad Salehi-Isfahani rebuts recent claims that millions of Iranian children are „deprived of access“ to primary and secondary schooling. His full analysis — which shows that the problem of access is largely limited to rural high schools — is available here. In his view, the misplaced focus on the issue of school access obscures much deeper problems with the Iranian education system, which he describes in the following excerpt. — The Editors

Djavad Salehi-Isfahani is a professor of economics at Virginia Tech and a senior fellow of the Brookings Institution. His research has been in demographic economics, energy economics, and the economics of the Middle East.

Tribal-schools-Khuzestan-Iran-570.jpgIran has very serious education problems, but lack of access to school is not one of them. The quality of education is poor and returns to formal schooling below the university level are low, prompting discouraged youth to leave schools after age 14 at alarming rates. At the same time, 99% of children are enrolled in school by age 7 and persist at a high rate until age 14 (first year of high school). This is when the realization sinks in that staying in school will not earn them a place in a good public university or the school officials tell them they are not fit for academic work and must choose between two losing options: vocational education or kardanesh. Why waste three more years of studying when the end result is a high school diploma that has not been of any value for several decades? Trying to get these kids to stay in school, as a series of articles in Donyaye Eghtesad (May 9, 2012), Iran’s largest circulation private daily paper, seem to prescribe, without doing something about job prospects after graduation serves no individual or social purpose. The problem for these kids is not lack of schools, or even boring classes: it is lack of purpose. The education system on its own cannot deal with this problem; it is a problem for the larger economic system. […] Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Iran Moves to Bolster Iraq’s Beleaguered Premier Maliki

Press Roundup provides a selected summary of news from the Farsi and Arabic press and excerpts where the source is in English. 


6:15 a.m. IRDT, 17 Khordad/June 6 Amid a surge of bombings and assassinations in Iraq carried out by Sunni militants and moves to hold a no-confidence vote in parliament that could unseat Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, Iran has been taking steps to support his embattled administration. (In the accompanying photo, taken in Tehran in April, Maliki is seen between Iranian First Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.) The Associated Press reports,

On Monday, one of the linchpin partners in al-Maliki’s government, Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, traveled to Iran for talks, government officials said. A day earlier, al-Sadr urged al-Maliki to „do the right thing“ and resign, but it remains unclear whether al-Sadr will bow to Iranian pressure in the end. […]In April, al-Maliki was given a red carpet welcome during a visit to Tehran, where he had spent some time as an anti-Saddam activist. Iran delivered an even bigger reward to al-Maliki in May: bringing the nuclear talks with world powers to Baghdad as a symbol of the city’s slow rebound from war and as a showcase of Iran’s close ties. […]

„There is some Iranian pressure on [Iraqi] President [Jalal Talabani] not to send the letter to parliament [requesting the no-confidence vote] and to support al-Maliki,“ said a lawmaker of al-Maliki’s political bloc, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not permitted to discuss sensitive political dealings with reporters.

Hamid al-Mutlaq, a Sunni lawmaker from the Iraqiya bloc, was more blunt: „The Iranian interference annoys us a lot. […] Iran is a big player in Iraqi politics.“ Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Briefs | Court Mandates U.S. Decision on MEK

giuliani1_0.jpgOn June 1, a U.S. District Appeals Court ruled that the Obama administration must finally decide within four months whether or not to remove the Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MEK) from the State Department’s list of foreign terrorist groups. The decision was a partial victory for the controversial Iranian opposition movement. It has long pressured Washington through both a court petition and a high-profile public relations campaign to be taken off the list.

In a press statement after the decision, the State Department said its position on the MEK has been under review since a court mandate in 2010, but that it „intends to comply“ with the new court’s order to determine the group’s legal or illegal status in the United States.

The State Department added that the MEK’s cooperation in relocating thousands of members from Camp Ashraf and the closure of that main paramilitary base in Iraq would be „key factors“ in Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s decision. The MEK has been slowly and reluctantly moving its members to a former U.S. military base further from the border with Iran. Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

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