More than 70 Iranian university graduates and academics are calling [fa] for the release of Hamed Saber, an Iranian photo-blogger and computer scientist who was arrested for unknown reasons on 21 June 2010 in Tehran. A friend has informed us that it was the first time Hamed was arrested. The same source said several of Hamed's photos of the Iranian protest movement have been published in foreign magazines without his knowledge.
Hamed is also the developer of “Access Flickr“, a Firefox internet browser extension that bypasses filters on the photo-sharing website Flickr in Iran, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, China and other locations where it is banned. One of Hamed's friends posted a letter in a discussion forum on Flickr seeking support for Hamed:
As some of you might already know, it has been nearly a month since Hamed Saber our dear friend and artist and the founder of Iranian group on Flickr has been arrested for no apparent reason.
There has been no news of him except for two telephone calls from an anonymous place.
A group of his old friends, university class mates and professors from well-known universities around the world have issued a letter requesting Hamed’s release.
All of us know him for quite a long time, since our first days of membership in this group or maybe in trips we went together with him.
Many of us started photography in Flickr and specifically this group and even made life-long friends here. I myself feel indebted to him for finding many artist friends here and in this group.
Today he is imprisoned for no clear reason and this is an opportunity to show our friendship and appreciation.
I thought we could write a letter or statement and defend his position as an artist and an old friend and ask for his release.
I am not that good at writing, any comment or idea or any suggestions for a solidarity gesture by anyone of you can be of help, so drop a line in the comment my friends , we have to take action as soon as possible.
Hamed's friends on the “Free Hamed Saber” blog wrote [fa]:
Saber, the winner of a Bronze medal in an international science competition, had the possibility to emigrate but he preferred to stay in Iran and work for its “independence and economic progress.”
The statement calls on Iranian leaders to give Saber a fair trial.