Prison Reportedly Confirms Death In Custody, Iran’s Fourth In Two Weeks

A day after prisoners at Greater Tehran penitentiary reported the death in custody of Shahin Naseri to his family and to the Oslo-based Iran Human Rights, sources close to the family told Iran International that prison authorities had confirmed to them his death and were investigating its cause.

In an audio-file acquired by Iran International, a political prisoner at the penitentiary Farhad Salmanpour-Zahir rejected any possibility of a suicide.

Salmanpour-Zahir said Naseri, who testified in the 2020 murder trial of wrestler Navid Afkari that Afkari had been tortured before his confession, was put into solitary confinement a day before the September 12 anniversary of Afkari’s execution to stop him giving media interviews.

Babak Paknia, Afkari’s lawyer, in a series of tweets Tuesday(link is external) said Naseri had contacted him three times from the prison Monday asking him to represent him. Paknia tweeted that Naseri had borrowed a card from a friend after his own phone had been confiscated.

Naseri earlier alleged he had been threatened after submitting his Askari testimony in 2020 by an investigation judge(link is external) who said he “was interfering in a security case.”

Naseri, who had shared a cell with Afkari at Adel-Abad prison in Shiraz, testified to court that Afkari had been tortured to confess to killing Hassan Turkman in Shiraz in 2018 during anti-government protests. Afkari was hanged 12 September last year after retracting in court the confession he said had been made under physical and psychological duress.

State media originally described Turkman as a member of security forces(link is external) but later reported he was a security guard for the publicly-owned Shiraz water company.

Naseri’s case is the fourth suspicious death in Iranian prison reported in September.

The Iraq-based Hengaw Organization for Human Rights reported on September 20 the deaths in Urumieh prison under torture by Revolutionary Guards(link is external) (IRGC) intelligence of two Kurdish detainees, Assad Ramin and Davoud Rahimi, allegedly members of the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran(link is external) (KDPI). Hengaw earlier reported the death in custody in Urumieh on September 8 of Yaser Mangouri, also − Hengaw said − under torture

Source: Iran International

Also Read: Lack of Accountability Perpetuates Deaths of Prisoners in Iran

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