Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, an imprisoned blogger, human rights activist, and tech expert, suffers from a severe kidney disease and is in urgent need of medical leave. However, the Iranian authorities have refused to act lawfully and cooperate. As a result he has been officially on hunger strike since May 23. His mother said two months ago: “They want Hossein to accept his charges and write a confession letter before they allow him prison leave. They have told us several times that the IRGC (Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps) will not agree to his release unless he confesses.”
Hossein is currently held in ward 350 of Evin prison (the general ward).
According to Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), Hossein Ronaghi Maleki is injected daily with morphine and other painkillers which has caused him to develop gallstones. Hossein, one of the Managing Directors of Iran Proxy, was sentenced to 15 years in prison by the Revolutionary Court.
Persian2English spoke to a source close to Hossein Ronaghi Maleki who gave the following information about the time of Hossein’s arrest and some of the tortures he endured in solitary confinement:
14 Ministry of Intelligence agents arrested Hossein Ronaghi Maleki along with his brother on December 13, 2009 at their parents’ home in the Eastern Azerbaijan province during an operation to “dismantle a counterrevolutionary network.” Hossein and his brother were flown to Evin prison in Tehran. On the plane one of the Intelligence agents banged Hossein’s head against the wall causing a deep gash in his head that required more than a dozen stitches.
Reports indicate that Ronaghi Maleki had “written and used software to combat filtering and to host and support websites and blogs that defend human rights.” His brother was later released on an $80 thousand (USD) bail.
Hossein was transferred to solitary confinement in the IRGC-controlled ward 2A. He was held there for approximately 13 consecutive months. During his time in solitary confinement Hossein endured brutal physical and psychological tortures. Persian2English discovered that the imprisoned blogger was deprived of clean drinking water during his time in solitary confinement. According to the sources, on several occasions Hossein was forced to drink toilet water and his own urine. During this time in solitary confinement Hossein, who was physically healthy prior to his imprisonment, developed a kidney disease.
Since his imprisonment Hossein has undergone four surgeries in a hospital outside the prison. However, since each time after the surgery he was immediately transferred back to prison his body never had the chance to heal. Consequently, Hossein developed an infection and lost the function of one of his kidneys. Hossein is currently at risk to lose his second kidney, if he is not provided medical leave from prison to recuperate.
Hossein Ronaghi Maleki was finishing up his last term in university when he was suspended due to his human rights activities. He never had the chance to enroll in school again because he was arrested shortly after.