July 29 Update from the International Emergency Campaign to Free Iran’s Political Prisoners

Full Page Appeal in NY Review of Books Calls for Freeing Iran’s Political Prisoners

COVID Outbreak Endangers Women Prisoners, Nahid Taghavi

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July 29, 2021 | revcom.us

Editors’ note: We received the following from the International Emergency Campaign to Free Iran’s Political Prisoners

A full-back cover ad in the new, Summer Issue of the New York Review of Books demands the “Islamic Republic of Iran: FREE ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS NOW!” while also opposing any U.S. threats, war moves, or sanctions against Iran.  The issue will be available August 5.

This Emergency Appeal – “The Lives of Iran’s Political Prisoners Hang in the Balance – We Must ACT NOW!” states, “A brutal campaign of arrests, torture and executions is now taking place in Iran.  This is an emergency.  The lives and dignity of hundreds of political prisoners are in imminent, mortal danger.”

Signers to the Emergency Appeal include Noam Chomsky, Gloria Steinem, Daniel Ellsberg, Cornel West, Ariel Dorfman, Nobel Laureate Jody Williams, Professors Judith Butler and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, former Iranian political prisoners and relatives of current prisoners, prominent figures from Europe, Canada, India, and elsewhere, and some 2,500 others. 

COVID Outbreak Endangers Women Prisoners, Nahid Taghavi

The urgency of the Appeal has been heightened by a COVID outbreak in the women’s ward of Evin Prison, and the Islamic Republic’s refusal to release 66 year-old, German-Iranian citizen Nahid Taghavi for medical treatment, as well as the regime’s brutal response to mass protests in Khuzestan Province which have spread across the country.  

Taghavi’s daughter Mariam Claren reports that more than 10 women political prisoners have contracted COVID and all have been given furloughs for medical treatment – except for her mother.  This despite the fact that Taghavi “developed diabetes in prison & suffers from high blood pressure” and is “at high risk of severe illness & death,” according to Claren. 

On July 27, Claren tweeted: “#freenahid‘s health continued to deteriorate. She is suffering from a fever, severe pain in her limbs and she vomited all night. Unfortunately, the authorities are behaving irresponsibly and blocking her medical furlough.”

The International Emergency Campaign to Free Iran’s Political Prisoners has joined Mariam Claren in demanding Nahid Taghavi be released for COVID treatment immediately, and that she and all Iran’s political prisoners be freed!

Ariel Dorfman:  “we should not let [the prisoners] down”

Renowned author, playwright and human rights activist Ariel Dorfman writes:

If I have signed on to the Emergency Campaign to Free Political Prisoners in Iran, it is because I know that this initiative will effectively call attention to the situation of men and women in that country who, if enough pressure is brought to bear on its leaders, could tomorrow be liberated from terrible conditions and extraordinary injustice. And even if those leaders do not listen, I am convinced — from personal experience — that the prisoners themselves are given strength to survive and persevere, they are listening. They know others, faraway, care what happens to them, and we should not let them down.