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News From Iran
The Green Brief is the best source of information from Iran, gathered from sources which are verified as well as they can be, under the circumstances. Nearly all of this information is gathered via twitter sources from inside Iran. An extremely small set of sources, considering the millions of Iranians who, not so long ago, carried on conversations with the world.
Josh, aka NiteOwl, has become a voice for some of them, and a valuable window for the rest of the world. I can’t stress how much I personally appreciate Josh and his small team for the work they’re putting into all this. As an American, it might seem strange that I would care at all. I can only stress that we are all brothers, sisters, and cousins on this world. We all come from a different place and we each have a unique journey.
We all share that.
The Green Brief #63 ( August 30 – Shahrivar 8 )
I’m NiteOwl AKA Josh Shahryar – twitter.com/iran_translator on twitter. I’m a journalist and a human rights activist and NOT Iranian. This is a compilation of news from Iran that I’ve gathered through twitter and Iranian sites that were advertised on twitter. Remember, this is all from tweets. (My work is released under Creative Commons (CC) under the condition that you provide a link to the original source.)
These are the important happenings that I can positively confirm from Sunday, August 30 – Shahrivar 8.
Protests / Unrest
1. More than 120 members of the detainees’ families gathered to protest their detention, in front of the Judiciary.
2. Dozens gathered at Amir Al-Momineen Mosque in Tehran and chanted anti-government slogans, as well as expressing support for Mir Hossein Mousavi.
3. There is word that a countrywide protest is being planned for September 18.
4. Partially confirmed reports, indicate that today in Karaj city’s Gowhardasht Prison, guards and members of the Intelligence Ministry, attacked political prisoners inside certain parts of the facility and severely beat them. Later, prisoners were dragged out and kept under the sun for over five hours. The report also suggested that some prisoners were injured and not given any medical attention for hours.
5. Partially confirmed reports indicate that Mir Hossein Mousavi took part in the mourning ceremony of Saeeda Pour-Aghaie in Tehran. Saeeda was one of the protesters, who had been killed in detention and then buried in one of the unmarked graves in Beheshte Zahra.
6. In a meeting with the central committee of his party – Etemaade Melli – Mehdi Karoubi stressed, yet again, that he will not back down. He said even though reformists had been severely restricted by the government, it was time for them to stand firm because these restrictions would not last long.
He added, yet again, that he had never claimed something without evidence and he had evidence, at hand, that the rape of detainees had taken place. He asked the committee, not to be upset about the ban on Etemaade Melli newspaper and to continue on their current course.
He warned the government that they will see people’s stance on Quds Day – September 18 – the people would show the government who they really supported. He said the pressure that was being applied on reformists, university students and faculty members, was a sign of the government’s weakness.
7. Karoubi today also met with ten former detainees, who had been held at Kahrizak. Families of the detainees were also present. The detainees spoke of their conditions and of the abuse at Kahrizak and showed their support for his stance. Further details of the meeting are not available at this point.
8. Rafsanjani denied that his children had entered the country’s political affairs and said they were just outspoken and could not stand hypocrisy. This came after allegations, that one of his sons used government money to covertly fund Rafsanjani’s campaign in the 2005 presidential elections. Also one of his daughters took part in protests and was briefly detained.
9. The Combatant Clerics Association held a meeting under the supervision of former President Mohammad Khatami. The Association condemned illegal actions, especially the inhumane behavior of detainees by the government. They also asked, newly-appointed Judiciary Chairman Sadegh Larijani, to swiftly act and stop such actions from taking place.
10. In an open letter to members of Iran’s parliament, Azam Taloghani – the Secretary General of the Women’s Association of the Islamic Revolution – asked the members of parliament to support Mousavi and Karoubi. She warned them, if they did not pursue the people who had committed atrocities – including tortures, rapes and murders – against the Iranian youth, they would lose the trust of the people completely.
Government / International
11. Ahmadinejad formally presented his cabinet members to the Iranian parliament. He said all the members had been carefully chosen and fitted the criteria for selection. He also said Iran would stand up to global arrogance. There are indications, that at least five of Ahmadinejad’s proposed cabinet members, will likely fail the vote of confidence by the parliament.
12. Judiciary Chief Sadegh Larijani, appointed former Tehran Attorney General Saeed Mortazavi, as the country’s Assistant Attorney General. He also appointed Gholamhossein Esmaeli as the head of State Prisons and the State’s Corrections Department. On Saturday, he appointed Abbas Jafari-Dolatabadi – the former head of Khuzestan province’s Judiciary – to replace Mortazavi as Tehran’s Attorney General.
13. Khamenei today, praised Iran’s establishment for standing up to post-election violence. He also said the country had successfully staved off the problems created, in the aftermath of the election. He said those who had committed crimes against the populace, by taking part in illegal activities during the post-election violence, will be dealt with, as well as those who had perpetrated the post-election events.
14. Sadegh Larijani has ordered the three-member commission, that has been set up to investigate the post-election violence, to also investigate Mehdi Karoubi’s letter. Attorney General Mohsen Ejaie is a member of the commission. He is also believed to be behind the brutal suppression of peaceful protesters.
15. Tehran’s Police Chief Azizollah Rajabzadeh, today said that no detainees had been killed at Kahrizak. He explained that detainees had not been kept at Kahrizak for more than three days. He also said that he had personally spoken to the official responsible for Kahrizak and had instructed him about conduct. He further added that all detainees had been arrested by judicial orders and no one had been detained illegally.
16. Kargozaran Party, which is considered close to Rafsanjani, today declared their support for Mehdi Karoubi.
17. Khamenei met with the family of Mostafa Ghanian who was killed during the unrest in Mashhad.
18. MP Farhad Tajari – a member of the parliamentary commission to assess the condition of detainees – said today that the names of those accused of abuse, would not be released according to the country’s laws. The law forbids their names from being released unless they are convicted, he said.
19. Partially confirmed reports indicate that Tehran’s provincial government, has threatened Tehran University’s managing staff, that if students continue to use the university’s premises for demonstrations, the university would see the upcoming term cancelled. This comes as Amir Kabir University’s dorm has been ordered to be evacuated for a week, according to the authorities, it needs to be cleaned before the start of the new term.
Arrested / Released / Killed / Torture
20. Morteza Alviri, Mehdi Karroubi’s representative on the vote supervision committee, today said that at least seven people had gone missing during the post-election violence and 69 were confirmed dead – among them, Taraneh Mousavi. He added that these were only the people they could positively identify and confirm.
He said they had given these names to the parliament’s committee, assessing the condition of detainees. He said the missing people were not found on the lists of casualties or those in detention.
Morteza Alviri said, “Taraneh Mousavi is one of the casualties and what aired on the 20:30 program from channel 2 (a state run television) about her being alive is false.”
This is while yesterday, the Commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, Mohammad Ali Jafari, claimed that during the post-election violence only 29 people had lost their lives. The official government statistic stands at around 30.
21. Saeeda Pour-Aghaie, a young girl, was raped and killed in detention. Confirmed reports say Saeeda was arrested by Basijis, from her home, for chanting Allaho Akbar from her rooftop. She was taken into detention, raped and then killed. Her body was burnt, except for her legs from her knees downwards, with a strong acid, to hide the evidence of her brutal ordeal.
Twenty days after her initial arrest, her mother was taken to the morgue and her body was identified. Her mother was not allowed to take her body for burial. She was later buried in the 302 section of Beheshte Zahra, in secret, without her family’s knowledge.
Her family has been put under extreme pressure, to say the cause of Saeeda’s death, was the result of complications arising from a kidney infection.
A picture of Saeeda and a full report in Farsi: http://www.mowjcamp.com/article/id/24124
22. At least two reliable sources, claim they have received reports, that unmarked graves in Beheshte Zahra’s 302 section, are the graves of women, who have been raped and then killed, after being arrested for protesting. This could not be confirmed by other sources at this time.
23. One reliable source, has reported another mass grave in Beheshte Zahra, but has not been able to provide ‘concrete’ evidence. As soon as more evidence is available, it will be presented here.
24. Mansoor Asanlo – a labor leader who is in detention – was badly beaten today, along with his other cell mates and accused of storing drugs in his cell.
25. It has been confirmed that Mehdi Hosseinzadeh has been in detention for three weeks. Hosseinzadeh is a journalist and analyst who had previously worked for Etemaad and is an expert in economics.
26. Fresh reports and testimonies now confirm that Kahrizak Prison may still be operational. One witness, who had been detained at Kahrizak, told an Iranian human rights agency yesterday, that after he had been released, he found out that Kahrizak had been ‘officially’ ordered shut down a week before.
The detainee also gave a full statement to the agency claiming:
– He was locked up, in a ship container at Kahrizak, with 75 other people in appalling conditions.
– They were underfed and rarely allowed to drink or allowed to take bathroom breaks.
– They were frequently beaten, to the point where they would almost faint.
– The detainee was beaten so badly, that one his earlobes was torn off his ear.
– Injured detainees, were simply tossed back into the container and were not given any medical help whatsoever.
– Detainees were only allowed to shower twice a month.
27. The judge, who was accused of having a hand in the incidents that occurred at Kahrizak is back, at his post, even though the government had announced earlier he has been fired from his job.
28. Kivan Samimi has been tortured so badly in detention, he had to be taken to hospital. He was admitted for several days to recover from his injuries, sustained during the beatings. He and other prisoners, have also been told repeatedly that Mousavi and Rafsanjani have been arrested, to break their morale and force them to make false confessions.
29. A prisoner, who has recently been released from Evin, tells of shocking news about the trials. According to him, detainees who were being put on trial, were told before being taken to court, that no one in the court was sympathetic towards them. They were told, that they might see media present, but they were all on the government’s side and if they said anything, other than what was pre-written for them, by the prison authorities, not only would it not get out of the courtroom, but they would also be severely punished for it, when brought back to prison.
30. Journalist Fariba Pajooh, has also been reportedly threatened that if she did not confess to being immoral, she would be hanged. Some of her reporter friends claim that authorities had used her ID on twitter and other sites to try and obtain information about her friends.
31. According to IRIB Chief Zarghami, IRIB has lost more than 60% of its viewership in the aftermath of the election.
32. Montreal Film Festival Greened? http://bit.ly/WkDlz
33. Billboard greenings continue in Kerman: http://bit.ly/TWP47
34. Yachting tournament in Czech Republic greened?http://bit.ly/iuKIA
International Protests / Events / Warnings / Efforts
35. Thousands of people gathered at Kungsträdgården, central Stockholm, today to participate in a demonstration for human rights in Iran. Among the speakers were Mona Sahlin, party leader for the Social democrats and Jan Björklund, party leader for the liberals and Minister for education. Amnesty and the Swedish organization for sexual rights RFSL were among the arrangers. (Courtesy of StockholmNews.com and Mats Öhlén)
36. A petition to be signed and sent to ambassadors as well as their contacts: http://docs.google.com/View?id=dcnj8jzc_8dxb9vbgf
37. PLEASE READ THIS FOR YOUR SAFETY’S SAKE: http://tinyurl.com/r2ow2c
38. For an unofficial list of upcoming protests in the US: http://protests.sharearchy.com/
39. For a list of protests that are being planned in Germany, please visit this link: http://tinyurl.com/nbzacj
40. A to the point website for help traumatized Greens: http://healingthegreensoul.blogspot.com/
(If you, your friends or your organization are holding events, protests or doing something else related to the Iranian election internationally, please send me an email with details and I will give you coverage. (Will only cost you 10 million dollars!) My email is: [email]email@example.com
This page contains a listing of external mirrors of the GB, as well as various information about the GB. Links to translations are also encouraged: http://aic.openmsl.net/wiki/index.php/Green_Brief
– (A list of all the Green Briefs): http://ded1.hybrid-optix.com/greenbriefs.html
– A hearty thanks to S joon for helping me out with proof-reading and very valuable tips. Also, a BIG THANKS to all the translators who’re spending their precious time on getting this to as many people as possible.
Original GreenBrief at WhyWeProtest