Montag, Februar 20, 2006


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Petition to United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, European Parliament and Iranian Authorities:

To: UN Human Rights Commisionaire, European Parliament

Her Excellency Louise Arbour
High Commissioner for Human Rights United Nations Office at Geneva
1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland Fax: + 41 22 917 9022

His Excellency Josep Fontelles Borrell
President of the European Parliament
Division for Correspondence with Citizens
L-2929 LUXEMBOURG Fax: (352) 4300 27072

We, the undersigned, are deeply concerned about the continuing detention of Dr. Abdolfattah Soltani, a defense attorney who has been imprisoned without formal charge in Tehran's Evin prison since July 30th 2005. He is allegedly detained in connection with disclosing information in a nuclear espionage case in which he was acting as defense counsel.

As Amnesty International declared in a recent press release (MDE 13/009/2006 February 1st, 2006) it is widely believed that “the continued detention of Abdolfattah Soltani is politically motivated and designed to discourage other Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) from pursuing cases against those responsible for committing human rights abuses, or defending people being prosecuted for political reasons. If so, he should be released immediately and unconditionally. At the very least, he must be given the earliest opportunity to defend himself against any charges the Iranian authorities intend to bring against him.”

Mr Soltani was denied access to his lawyer for more than five months and was just recently allowed to visit his wife. Last month he was given an option of being freed on bail, but the amount of bail was so unreasonably high ($870,000) that no one could afford to put.

We demand that authorities offer him the due process of law as prescribed by Iranian constitution and universal declaration of human rights to which Iran is a signatory. Mr. Soltani as a prisoner of conscience and a Human Rights Defender should have the right to regular visits with his family and defense attorneys.

Furthermore, we urge the Iranian judicial authorities to develop national plans of action to implement the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders (HRD) as an important first step to ensure that HRDs are able safely to carry out their legitimate activities for the promotion and protection of human rights free from harassment, fear or retaliation.

We demand that Dr. Abdolfattah Soltani be released immediately and unconditionally.

List of Initiators of the petition in alphabetic order:

1. Afshar, Haleh, University of York, UK
2. Alamdari, Kazem, California State University Los Angeles, USA
3. Amirahmadi, Hooshang, Rutgers University, USA
4. Ansari. Nazanin. Journalist Kayhan-London, UK
5. Atri, Kia, UK
6. Bahadori, Atefeh, Holland
7. Bayat, Asef, Leiden University, Netherland
8. Bijnen, Lucy, Human Rights Advocate, Netherland
9. Bonakdarian, Mansour, Hofstra University, USA
10. Boroujerdi, Mehrzad, Syracuse University, USA
11. Dadvar, Faramarz, Center in Defense of Freedom & Democracy in Iran-Chicago
12. Darabi, Firouzeh, USA
13. Dehghan, Mohammad, Germany
14. Ebadi, Shirin, Nobel Peace Laureate, 2003.
15. Eghtedari, Goudarz, Voices of the Middle East, USA
16. Ehsani, Kaveh, Middle East Research and Information Project, USA
17. Entessar, Nader, Spring Hill College, USA
18. Eskandari, Mohammad, Clark University, USA
19. Farhang, Mansour, Bennington College, USA
20. Farhi, Farideh, University of Hawai’I, USA
21. Ganjbakhche, Amir Hossein, Natiopnal Institute of Health, USA
22. Hashemi, Nader, Northwestern University, USA
23. Joodaki, Saideh, Iran
24. Kar, Mehrangiz, Harvard University, USA
25. Kian-Thiébaut, Azadeh, University of Paris VIII, France
26. Lavaei, Mehrdad, Iran Future Foundation, Netherlands
27. Mashayekhi, Mehrdad, Georgetown University, USA
28. McDougall, James, Princeton University and MERIP, USA
29. Moeini, Mohammad R., University of Massachusetts, USA
30. Mohammadi, Monireh, Canada
31. Moshaver, Bijan, Iran Future Foundation, Netherlands
32. Parsa, Misagh, Dartmouth College, USA
33. Partyka, Joanna, USA
34. Perkovich, Michael J., USA
35. Roshandel, Jalil, Duke University, USA
36. Sadri, Mahmoud, Texas Woman’s University, USA
37. Shabani, Omid, University of Guelph, Canada
38. Sheybani, Lida, London
39. Soltani, Maede, Germany
40. Taati, Poopak, Professor and Journalist, USA
41. Toensing, Chris, Middle East Research and Information Project, USA
42. Tohidi, Nayereh, University of California Los Angeles, USA

For more information visit special Free Soltani web site
click here!
The Undersigned