9th May 2011
Abdolali Madadzadeh, father of imprisoned student activist Shabnam Madadzadeh, spoke recently with the international Campaign for Human Rights in Iran about his daughter’s transfer from Rajaee Shahr Prison in Karaj, to Gharchak Prison in Varamin, on Tuesday evening without explanation. According to her sentence, Madadzadeh is to spend her prison term in exile at Rajaee Shahr Prison. Abdolali Madadzadeh, whose son Farzad Madadzadeh is also in prison, told the Campaign that he is shocked by the abrupt transfer. “Her mother traveled from Tabriz to Karaj yesterday to visit with her daughter, but she was not allowed to visit her. Authorities told her that they were transferring them to Gharchak Prison, and did not allow a visitation. Since yesterday, we are confused about what this means. This morning Shabnam called us for just one minute to tell me what happened. They allowed her to make a one-minute phone call and let us know,” said Abdolali Madadzadeh.
Reports indicate that in addition to Shabnam Madadzadeh, Baha’i leaders Mahvash Sabet and Fariba Kamaliabadi were also transferred to Gharchak Prison on Tuesday evening. There is no detailed information about the names of other female political prisoners transferred to Gharchak Prison.
“We only talked for one moment. She said 200 people were transferred to Gharchak Prison. She said the bathrooms and showers don’t function properly. In one spot, both clothes and dishes are being washed and people are taking baths, too. She said: ‘We have nothing. Criminals who have knifed their victims, murderers, political prisoners, con artists, opium addicts, they are all kept in one place,’” Madadzadeh told the Campaign about his daughter’s phone call.
“Do you think the law is carried out?! They take [the prisoners] wherever they like. It’s not just my child, they have taken 200 people from Rajaee Prison to Gharchak,” said Abdolali Madadzadeh about the reasons for the transfer.
“What can I expect when the doctor at the prison infirmary told her, ‘We brought you here to torture you, not to treat you?’ My child is sick in there. Not just Shabnam, all the prisoners are ill. I have two children in prison and I don’t know about which one to talk. Farzad is at Rajaee Shahr Prison now. The brother and sister had not been able to visit each other for several months there. Shabnam wasn’t allowed to visit her brother before being transferred,” he added.
Shabnam Madadzadeh, the former Political Secretary for the Islamic Student’s Association at Tarbiat Modares University in Tehran, was arrested on 20 February 2009. On 9 February 2010, she was sentenced to five years in prison in exile at Rajaee Shahr Prison. The sentence was upheld on 2 June 2010. Madadzadeh’s transfer to a different prison ended her chances of occasional visits with her brother.