Mother of Imprisoned Physicist Writes Letter to Khamenei Pleading for His Freedom
Mother of Imprisoned Physicist Writes Letter to Khamenei Pleading for His Freedom – The mother of Omid Kokabee, a physicist imprisoned in Iran since …
The mother of Omid Kokabee, a physicist imprisoned in Iran since January 2011, has written a letter to the Islamic Republic’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, calling for her son’s freedom on the occasion of the start of the new academic year.
“For the fifth consecutive year, when the academic year begins, in a country whose leader emphasizes scientific progress so much, I ask myself, should Omid be studying in class, or in the corner of a prison cell? Do not let us repeat this question again this year,” Safar Bibi Haghnazari wrote in her letter, a copy of which has been made available to the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.
“I request that you order the release of my dear Omid on the occasion of the opening of schools. He is the son of this very land and was thanked and commended for winning a medal in the [Physics] Olympiad … when he met you as a member of a group of top students in 2003. Return him to where he belongs, that is in the arms of learning and academia.”
Later in her letter Ms. Haghnazari referred to the illegal judicial process her son was subjected to and wrote: “I do not want to get into the details of the case. I know, if you want, you can get information about my son from your trusted neutral sources (not those who fabricated this case) and see that he really has not committed any sin. What greater proof than last year the [Iranian] Supreme Court, the highest judicial authority in the country, found my son to be innocent of the false and baseless charges against him and ordered his case be reviewed? We were hoping to see my son back home and in university, but shockingly the parallel [Revolutionary] court again reinstated the previous sentence without a single line of logical and legal reasoning, against the judgment of Supreme Court – the highest judicial authority in the country. Unfortunately my innocent son is still in Evin Prison.”
Ms. Haghnazari noted that even if her son was guilty he should be out of prison by now based on Article 134 of Iran’s New Islamic Penal Code, which states that in the case of multiple charges, a individual should not serve more the maximum punishment for the charge carrying the heaviest sentence. “By law, he should have been qualified to receive parole after serving a third of his sentence. Or he should have been included in pardons for various holy occasions. But he is even being denied his legal rights.”
Omid Kokabee’s mother also mentioned that throughout his almost five years in prison, he has not been allowed to have meetings with his lawyer or to go on furlough (temporary leave routinely granted to inmates for medical reasons or familial occasions), despite his poor medical condition.
“Unfortunately after five years in prison, my son’s various medical problems and illnesses have made us very worried. He has passed kidney stones under great pain four times without any treatment. He has had serious stomach problems and lost four of his teeth. He has even suffered from heart palpitations because of all the stress in prison. He is still being denied outside medical treatment despite the prison doctor’s recommendation. I ask that you free my son and alleviate this great pain,” she wrote.
Omid Kokabee, 32, was a doctoral physics student at the University of Texas, who was arrested at Imam Khomeini Airport on January 30, 2011, as he was about to leave Iran to return to the U.S after visiting his family. After 15 months of detention, he was sentenced by Judge Salavati to 10 years in prison for “contact with enemy states (U.S.)” on May 14, 2012.
In an open letter from Evin Prison in 2013, Kokabee revealed that he had been arrested because he had turned down a request from Iranian security agents to cooperate on a military research project.
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Mother of Imprisoned Physicist – Mother of Imprisoned Physicist – Mother of Imprisoned Physicist – Mother of Imprisoned Physicist
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