Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

Promoting tolerance and justice through knowledge and understanding
Reporters Without Borders

Emadoldin Baghi imprisoned

Reporters Without Borders
December 6, 2010

Emadoldin Baghi, journalist and emblematic figure in the defence of human rights in Iran, began serving a six-year prison sentence on 5 December. Before turning himself in at Evin prison he said in an interview: In fact neither I nor my lawyers know whether the sentences have been upheld, by what court and in front of which judge! All that happened is that I received a phone call telling me to give myself up at the prison! … All this bears no relation to law and justice”.

According to information obtained by Reporters Without Borders, several other journalists are in exactly the same situation as Emadoldin Baghi: under order to present themselves at the prison certain of being arrested.

With 27 journalists, nine netizens and one media contributor already in jail, Iran is now the world’s third largest prison for journalists.

4 December 2010 - Emadoldin Baghi threatened with imprisonment

Reporters Without Borders is extremely concerned about the plight of journalist Emadoldin Baghi, and emblematic figure in the defence of human rights in Iran, who on 27 November 2010 received a summons ordering him to present himself at Evin jail by 5 December.

We are extremely worried about the summons which will probably lead to his arrest. Baghi is currently under medical treatment and his state of health is fragile. We call on European states which have opened negotiations with Iran on nuclear issues to pay careful attention to the case of this passionate defender of freedom of expression.

Baghi was arrested on 28 December 2009, the day after opposition demonstrations on 27 December 2009, in a roundup orchestrated by the Ministry of Intelligence and the Revolutionary Guards. He was sentenced in July 2010, by the 15th chamber of the revolutionary court to one year in prison and to a five year ban on working as a journalist. He was also sentenced by the 26th chamber of the revolutionary court to six years in prison for having appeared on the Persian service of the BBC along with dissident religious leader Hossein Ali Montazeri, who died in December.

Emadoldin Baghi, 48, has been summonsed, sentenced and imprisoned more than 80 times over the past ten years. The president of the Association for the defence of prisoners’rights, was awarded The Human Rights Prize of the French Republic in 2005, for his work in support of the abolition of the death penalty in Iran. He also received the Martin Ennals prize for his commitment to human rights.