Iran Human Rights, June 6: Reports from Iran indicate that prisoners of conscience Hossein Ronaghi Maleki and Mohammad Sedigh Kaboudvand are severely ill and require immediate medical leave from prison.
Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, a student blogger, Internet security expert, and human rights activist, who developed a severe kidney disease during his time in solitary confinement, is in urgent need of medical leave from prison.
According to close sources, doctors who performed tests on Ronaghi Maleki recommended he receives treatment and rest outside the prison. The same sources said that Ronaghi Maleki and his family members have sent several appeals to Iranian authorities requesting prison furlough, but the authorities have refused him proper medical help.
Reports indicate that Ronaghi Maleki has been on hunger strike since more than ten days ago to protest the violation of his human rights and, on June 3, Ronaghi Maleki was taken to the Hasheminejad Kidney Center hospital after experiencing weakness. He is currently still held in this hospital. According to reports, yesterday, Ronaghi Maleki was moved to another location in the hospital and was granted a visit from his family members. Additionally, since yesterday Ronaghi Maleki has begun a dry hunger strike (refusing to drink water as well). Ronaghi Maleki is sentenced to 15 years in prison.
Mohammad Sedigh Kaboudvand, the founder of the first human rights organization in Kurdistan Iran, has been on hunger strike in Evin prison since nearly two weeks ago in protest to the refusal by Iranian authorities to grant him prison furlough to see his ailing son. Kaboudvand was transferred to the prison infirmary on June 4, and there has been no information on his location since that date. Despite Kaboudvand’s condition the Iranian authorities have refused to grant the visit with his son. According to reports, Kaboudvand’s health is very poor and he has reportedly suffered two heart attacks in prison. Kaboudvand is sentenced to a total of eleven years in prison.
Iran Human Rights is strongly concerned about the conditions of Hossein Ronaghi Maleki and Mohammad Sedigh Kaboudvand. Iran Human Rights has also received reports about the ailing health conditions of several other political prisoners, including Narges Mohammadi, a human rights activist.
Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, the spokesperson of Iran Human Rights, said, "Mr. Kaboudand, Mr. Ronaghi Maleki, and other prisoners of conscience in Iran are behind bars solely for practicing their legal civil rights. This is a clear violation of the United Nation’s Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Iran is party to. They should be released immediately."
Amiry-Moghaddam also demanded an urgent visit by the UN Special Rapporteur on Iran to the prisons. He said, " We have reliable reports indicating that many prisoners of conscience in Iran are held under inhumane conditions. In recent years, several prisoners have "died" due to a lack of appropriate medical treatment. Allowing UN observers to visit Iranian prisons must be the first demand presented to the Iranian authorities in dialogues between them and members of the international community— like the 5+1 group. The world cannot just witness silently the death and maltreatment of Iranian prisoners."