Iranian Journalist Held Arbitrarily: Rahman Ghahremanpour
March 2, 2012
Rahman Ghahremanpour, 35, was arrested by officials believed to be from the Ministry of Intelligence on 1 June 2011. A news agency close to the government, Mashreq News, reported on 2 July 2011 that someone with the initials “R. Gh.” was arrested on charges of espionage. While the agency did not use his full name, details given in the article indicate that they were referring to Rahman Ghahremanpour.
Rahman Ghahremanpour’s arrest was around the same time as the arrest of three professors from Turkey who arrived in Tehran on 28 May 2011 in order to attend a seminar. The Turkish professors were arrested by the Iranian authorities on charges of espionage for the United States on 31 May and were held in Evin Prison. All three professors were later released on 12 June 2011. Rahman Ghahremanpour had attended workshops organized by one of the Turkish professor on the subject of free and fair elections and had participated in a study group visiting the United States for electoral observation. His arrest may be in relation to attending these activities.
Rahman Ghahremanpour has apparently not been charged or tried since his arrest and he has not had access to a lawyer. The authorities have not given Rahman Ghahremanpour’s family details about his current legal status, or whereabouts, despite their repeated inquiries. He is believed to have been held in solitary confinement for the first three months following his arrest.
Please write immediately in Persian, English or your own language:
Calling on the Iranian authorities to ensure that Rahman Ghahremanpour is protected from torture and other ill- treatment and is granted adequate medical care;
Urge the authorities to allow Rahman Ghahremanpour immediate and regular visits from his family and a lawyer of his own choosing;
Stress that if Rahman Ghahremanpour has been arrested solely for his peaceful academic or journalistic work, is a prisoner of conscious and must be immediately and unconditionally released.
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iranian journalist held arbitrarily
Rahman Ghahremanpour is the Director of the Disarmament Research Group in the Centre for Strategic Research – a think-tank affiliated to the Expediency Council. The Expedience Council is a body set up by a decree of Ayatollah Khomeini in 1988 in order to resolve disputes between Parliament and the Council of Guardians, which vets legislation for conformity with the Constitution and Islamic Law. According to the Centre for Strategic Research website, the Centre was founded in 1989 and carries out strategic research in different fields including cultural, legal, political, social and international studies. Prior to being affiliated to the Expediency Council in 1997, the Centre was affiliated to the Presidential Office. The Centre also assists the Expediency Council by providing relevant research for the Council including consultation services to the Supreme Leader and formulating general policies of the system.
Dr. Rahman Ghahremanpour holds a BA in physics from Orumiyeh University and a MA and a PhD in political science from Shahid Beheshti University in Tehran. He has been a researcher at the Centre for Strategic Research (CSR) and the Centre for Middle East Strategic Studies. He also was the editor in chief of Hamshahri Diplomatic monthly magazine and worked for Tehran e Emrooz, an online newspaper.
Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Iran is a state party, states that anyone who is arrested “shall be informed, at the time of arrest, of the reasons for his arrest and shall be promptly informed of any charges against him”. In November 2011, the UN Human Rights Committee, which oversees implementation of the ICCPR, expressed concern about the average length if pre-trial detention periods in Iran in its Concluding Observations. The Committee stated that the Iranian authorities should “ensure that pre-trial detention is not excessively long in law and in practice, particularly through independent judicial supervision and prompt access to lawyers”.
Name: Rahman Ghahremanpour
Gender m/f: m
UA: 74/12 Index: MDE 13/012/2012 Issue Date: 2 March 2012