World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Decade of unjust imprisonment ends for Mahvash Sabet

Decade of unjust imprisonment ends for Mahvash Sabet


Auckland, New Zealand (Sunday 24 September 2017)

News of the release from prison of 64-year-old Mrs Mahvash Sabet, one of the seven Iranian Baha'i leaders arrested in 2008, has given the New Zealand Baha'i community hope that it may signal a new chapter in the treatment of Baha'is in Iran. “Mrs Sabet was arrested for her religious beliefs and subjected to an unjust 10-year prison sentence,” says spokesperson for the NZ Baha'i Community, Mr Paddy Payne. “Our hope is that the government will now begin to uphold the promise it has made of creating justice for all Iranians equally.”

Mrs Sabet was the first member of a group known as the Yaran – or the Friends – to be arrested. Six others were arrested in May 2008 after an early morning raid in their homes. “All seven were held incommunicado for weeks, subjected to solitary confinement, and suffered appalling treatment and deprivations, including psychological and physical hardships,” said Mr Payne.

Some 20 months after being imprisoned without charge, their trial began in January 2010 and ended five months later after six brief sessions, characterised by their lack of due legal process.

Following the first trial, their lawyer and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Ms. Shirin Ebadi, who had hardly one hour’s access to her defendants, explained that she had read the dossier of charges against them and found no proof to sustain their criminal charges. “I am the head of the legal team representing these seven Baha’is. I have studied their files thoroughly,” said Ms. Ebadi. “There is not a shred of evidence for the charges levelled against them.”

Their arrest and imprisonment prompted an international outcry for their release by the United Nations, governments and worldwide media, which was ignored by the Iranian authorities.

“The trial and treatment of the group reflects the treatment of the entire Baha’i community in Iran,” said Mr Payne. “Over some 40 years, more than 220 Baha’is have been killed, hundreds imprisoned, and an entire community has been categorically excluded from public jobs and university education.”

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Swing States: Gordon Campbell On Why The US Needs MMP

After the bizarre events this week in Helsinki, the world will be hoping and praying that the US midterm elections in November can put a restraining brake on the presidency of Donald Trump. This may happen, but there’s a highly undemocratic reason why such hopes may be frustrated. More>>

ALSO:

putin, trump scalpGordon Campbell: On The White House Romance With Russia

Tough on Europe over trade, at the G-7. Tough on Europe over defence, at NATO. And utterly smitten as usual by Vladimir Putin at the Helsinki summit. More>>

ALSO:


Gordon Campbell: On This Week’s NATO Debacle

For someone routinely cast as a clown presiding over an administration in chaos, Donald Trump has been very consistent about his agenda, and remarkably successful in achieving it, in the short term at least. More>>

ALSO:

NZ Law Society: Rule Of Law Threatened In Nauru

“The recently enacted Administration of Justice Act 2018 is another clear sign of the deterioration of civil rights in Nauru,” the Law Society’s Rule of Law Committee convenor Austin Forbes QC says. More>>

ALSO:

'Fixing' Family Separation: Executive Order Imprisons Families Indefinitely

Amnesty: President Trump signed an executive order today mandating for children to stay with their parents in detention while their asylum claims are processed. More>>

ALSO: