Top reformist sentenced to 6 years in prison


GVF — Iran’s Revolutionary Court has sentenced prominent reformist politician Mohsen Armin to six years in prison, as well as a five-year ban on political activity.

According Mashregh news, a hardline website affiliated with the Iranian Intelligence forces, Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court sentenced Mohsen Armin, a former deputy of the Iranian parliament (Majlis), to five years in prison for “assembly and collusion” against the regime as well as “acting against national security.” The court, presided over by Judge Salavati, issued an additional one-year jail-term for alleged “propaganda” against the political establishment.

Armin is a senior member of the Mujahedin of the Islamic Revolution Organisation (MIRO) and was the former editor-in-chief of the banned pro-reform biweekly Asr-e Ma (or “Our Age” in Persian).

While serving as a reformist MP in the Parliament, Armin accused Tehran’s former Chief Prosecutor Saeed Mortazavi of being directly involved in the death of Zahra Kazemi, an Iranian-Canadian journalist who had been beaten into a coma while in the custody of the Iranian judiciary.

Based on the Revolutionary Court’s ruling, Armin will also be barred from membership in any political party or faction. The outspoken activist was initially arrested on 16 May 2010 after his interview with the reformist Etemad daily. He was finally released on a heavy bail of 2,000,000,000 Rials ($180,000) on 24 July that year.

A number of other MIRO members including Abolfazl Ghadyani, Behzad Nabavi, Javad Emam and Feizollah Arabsorkhi are still behind bars serving lengthy prison terms.

In a recent damning report on the human rights situation in Iran, the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur Ahmed Shaheed called on the Iranian Government to facilitate the activities of civil society actors and to “refrain from repressing dissent”. It also requested that Iran “launch full investigations” into cases of ill-treatment against political prisoners.

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