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Political Prisoners Continue Hunger Strike, Other Prisoner Joins in Support

Seventeen political prisoners are on hunger strike in protest to being transferred forceably to a high security Section within the Rajaie Shahr Prison in Karaj. The section that they were transferred to include 40 cameras and six listening devices to each cell. The prisoners have no privacy at all. This is just one example of the regime attempting to further silence those who support change in the Iranian government and whose ideologies do not coincide with the Supreme Leader.

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The names of some of these political prisoners are Abolghassem Fouladvand, Saied Masouri, Mohammad Banazadeh Amir Khizi, Saied Shirzad, Amir Ghaziani, Khaled Hardani, Shahin Zoghi Tabar, Jafar Eghdami, Loghman and Zaniar Moradi, Majid Assadi, Payam Shakiba and Houshang Rezaie. Those on the hunger strikes have also been threatened with the loss of family visits and their contact with the outside world severely limited if they do not end their hunger strikes.

The transfer was led by Yousef Mardani, the head of Rajaie Shahr Prison, and a group of masked special guards. They attacked Unit 12, where these prisoners were originally located. During the attack, prisoners’ belongings were destroyed, along with air conditioners and a water purifier. Personal items, including pictures and eyeglasses, were destroyed by the guards. They also destroyed the prisoners’ writings and stole their money. Finally, they beat the prisoners, some quite severely.

According to reports, eight prisoners were detained in solitary cells until August 7. Another six prisoners ended up serving 17 days in solitary and during the first 12 days, these men weren’t allowed access to the outside and fresh air at all.

Section 10 provides little to no privacy to the men. They have to deal with cameras and listening devices even in the showers and restrooms. Prisoners are constantly being monitored for any supposed offenses. Those prisoners who have medical conditions are also being denied their medication and this is negatively impacting their health. As a result, the conditions are getting very critical.

Another prisoner, Navid Khanjani, went on a hunger strike on August 15 in protest to the transfers of the other political prisoners to Section 10 and also to protest the conditions that these prisoners must contend with. After announcing his hunger strike, he also was transferred to solitary confinement. Mardani, as the head of Rajaie Shahr Prison, has announced that any further hunger strikes, particularly those in protest of prison conditions, will result in those prisoners being transferred to solitary confinement.

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