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As of January 2009, this site is definitely closed, but you can follow Safa Haeri on his new blog: DAMAVAND at http://wwwdamavandsafa.blogspot.com

IRANIAN JUDICIARY DENOUNCED BY INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY

Published Saturday, January 15, 2005



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TEHRAN, 15 Jan. (IPS) Mrs. Shirin Ebadi, the Iranian human rights activist and lawyer who won the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize refused to appear in court on Saturday, saying the summons had failed to state the charge against her.

Mrs. Ebadi had earlier said that she would not attend the court.

According to her lawyer, Mr. Mohammad Ali Dadkhah, an Islamic Revolution court has told him that some one has lodged a complaint against Mrs. Ebadi, but refused to identify the accuser or to specify the charges.

“When I went to the court that has summoned Mrs. Ebadi, I was told that the affair had been sent to another branch of the Islamic Revolution tribunal”, Mr. Dadkhah told the Students news agency ISNA.

Though nothing is known about the charges, but what has surprised observers is that the prominent activist is summoned by a court that deals with security matters, like espionage, counter-espionage, activities against the security of the State etc.

Normally, a complaint must go to an ordinary court. If that court rules for its incompetence, then it will go to an appropriate court. However, the procedure here has not been upheld and the whole affair is therefore illegal”, Mr. Dadkhah added.

Mrs. Ebadi had earlier said that she would not attend the court.

"I informed them in writing that I will not show up because this summons is illegal", the British news agency Reuters quoted the 57 years-old Ebadi as having indicated.

"According to the law, the summoning letter must specify if I am accused or not and what for. This one does not", Mrs. Ebadi, the first Iranian and Muslim woman to win the prestigious Prize explained.

“Three days ago, I received a letter from the Islamic Revolution court urging me to call at the said court and if I do not comply, I could be arrested, but there was no explanation as for the charges or the reasons I was summoned”, she said.

"As head of state, I personally have guaranteed her safety and her freedom to continue her activities", President Mohammad Khatami assured.

Mr. Mohammad Seyfzadeh, a prominent lawyer, also said that Islamic revolution courts have no competence to summon people.

“As a matter of principle, these courts are illegal because they had been established in the first years of the revolution and fur specific purposes”, he told the Persian-language Radio Farda (Tomorrow), based in Prague.

The Iranian Judiciary, directly controlled by Ayatollah Ali Khameneh’i, the leader of the Islamic Republic, has in recent months increased crackdown against political dissidents, some of them defended by Mrs. Ebadi.

Her defence of several popular dissidents, incliding intellectuals, journalists and politicians has angered both the conservatives and many clerics who have denounced her as being protected by foreign powers.

Iranian political analysts said the crackdown is connected to the upcoming presidential elections, with the ruling conservatives expected to be the winner.

“Every time we approach an election in Iran, we face same kind of political showdown by the conservatives”, one analyst told Iran Press Service on condition of anonymity. “The aim is to tell the people that the regime is strong and the conservatives are in full control”, he added.

Asked about the case, President Mohammad Khatami said Mrs. Ebadi “has nothing to fear”.

IRANIAN JUDICIARY DENOUNCED BY INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY-Body

"As head of state, I personally have guaranteed her safety and her freedom to continue her activities", he told reporters in Dakar, Senegal, where he was on an official visit.

"It is just an ordinary case and it is going to be settled pretty soon", he added.

But observers said in case the matter got worse and resulting in the Nobel Peace winner’s arrest, Khatami can not and would not interfere.

“So far, the Judiciary, which is independent of the Executive, has arrested several of the President’s closest allies and he has never done anything to help them”, one journalist pointed out.

Before and after winning the award Ebadi has received death threats from religious hard-liners who view her as an agent of the West intent on undermining Iran's Islamic values.

The case of Mrs. Ebadi resulted in a national and international wave of anger and condemnation. While hundreds of Iranians denounced the action of the Judiciary, the State Department said the action against Mrs. Ebadi showed the disrespect of the Iranian regime for human rights activists.

The European Parliament also criticised the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic and called on the ruling Iranian ayatollahs to rectify their crackdown on the dissidents.

Out of nine journalists and webloggers who had been arrest on orders from the Judiciary, seven have told a presidential committee that they had been subject to severe psychological and physical tortures and forced to make fake confessions, accusing respected personalities of the opposition of sexual relationship, using drugs and drinking alcohol. ENDS EBADO SUMMONED 15105

 

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As of January 2009, this site is definitely closed, but you can follow Safa Haeri on his new blog: DAMAVAND at http://wwwdamavandsafa.blogspot.com


IRANIAN JUDICIARY DENOUNCED BY INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY-Main
"I told the court that I would not attend, and also that the summon is illegal"



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