Hunger strike, a filtered journal & a banned NGO

Many Iranian bloggers are worried about Ahmad Batebi, activist student who is on hunger strike in prison for about ten days. Many compared his case to Akbar Mohammadi’s, another student activist who died in prison while he was on hunger strike. Several bloggers have written that Mohammadi is gone we should save Batebi’s life. Ahmad Batebi was first arrested during the student protest movement in 1999 and he was rearrested about two weeks ago.

Looking for help

Fm Sokhan blogger & journalist quotes a letter from Ahmad Batebi’s father [Fa].

Come and reveal your crimes and we reveal ours, and then we see who the criminal is. You should know this fact that Ahmad Batebi is not alone, he is son of Iran. Iran is full of Ahmad Batebi. Have courage to talk with us face to face. What is our fault?

Man Iranyam, in his turn quotes Ahmad Batebi's wife who is desperately trying to meet her husband [Fa]. The blogger says

Ahmad Batebi’s wife says we had Zahra Kazemi’s death, we had Akbar Mohammadi’s death and now Ahmad Batebi is in a bad condition…Some say he is in Evin’s (prison) clinic, some say he is on hunger strike. In these past few days I was just insulted and humiliated. The Ministry of Intelligence threatened me because I am giving interview about my husband.

Roozmarigiha writes about students gathering in the memory of Akbar Mohammadi. The blogger says this protest gathering has also another message: Ahmad Batebi is on his sixth day of hunger strike and if we do not pay attention we shall witness another crime [Fa].

Alpar reminds the Iranian authorities that Akbar Mohammadi as a prisoner was Iranian State’s guest and authorities were responsible for his life. He adds Ahmad Batebi is on the sixth day of hunger strike and nobody has heard anything about him. If you want to kill him there are more fair ways to do that! The blogger says, open your eyes if another prisoner dies do not mention heart attack as the cause of the death [Fa].

The rearresting of student activists is only one element that shows freedom is under more pressure in Iran. The blogs inform us about more filtering and more pressure on human rights activists.

Freedom under more pressure

Bijan Saf Sara, editor & blogger says his online Irane Ma journal was filtered and is not available any more for Iranian online users. According to the blogger Irane Ma, the first online journal inside country was filtered on journalist day. The blogger adds in the Islamic Republic there are so many red, black and violet lines that what ever you do your foot can slip [Fa]… The journal appeared for 310 issues before being filtered.

According to the media, Iran’s Ministry of the Interior has banned the activities of the country’s major human rights watchdog founded four years ago by a group of lawyers that includes Nobel Peace activist Shirin Ebadi who is its current director. In Webgardian we read Shirin Ebadi's open letter to ask for help:

This center is a member of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and has been registered there. It has also been awarded a human rights prize by the Human Rights National Commission in France. This center is very well known and credible in Iran. Two days ago the government of Iran announced that this center is illegal and provided we continue our activities, they shall arrest us. Of course me and the other members of the center do not intend to shut down the center and we shall continue our activities. However, there is a high possibility that that they will arrest us. The government's action in this regard is illegal.Therefore, I kindly request that you broadcast this message by all mean and gather spiritual support for our center.

Aknon says the conservative Keyhan journal pretended that Ramin Jahanbegloo, jailed philosopher confessed to try to get classified information through web [Fa]. Jahanbegllo was accused of cybernetic journalism and contact with Iranian internet activists via yahoo and Google. Keyhan concludes even though there are already special committees to encounter internet related crimes, Jahanbegloo’s confession makes it necessary to take specific decisions. The blogger considers this kind of articles and news irrational. He says

What does it mean being an activist in yahoo or Google? Probably these activists check their emails on Yahoo or Google. He adds what does it mean cybernetic journalism?

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