Trade unionist Ends Hunger Strike: Reza Shahabi
Iranian trade unionist Reza Shahabi ended his hunger strike on 7 January after 22 days, after the prison authorities agreed to meet his demand to grant him medical leave.
Reza Shahabi (also known as Reza Shahabi Zakaria), treasurer of the Union of Workers of the Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company (Sherkat-e Vahed), was temporarily released from Tehran’s Evin Prison on the evening of 7 January after he was granted a five-day medical leave by the prison authorities. According to his family, he has lost 15kg and is suffering from low blood pressure. Reza Shahabi had told his family that he would continue his hunger strike until he was granted medical leave.
On 15 December, Reza Shahabi was transferred to a hospital outside prison for medical examinations, including an MRI scan, but was taken back to the prison before the examinations were carried out. He said the guard who went with him threatened to beat him if he resisted being taken back to the prison. In protest at the authorities’ treatment, Reza Shahabi stopped taking his medication that day and started a hunger strike two days later.
Reza Shahabi is serving a six-year prison sentence in Section 350 of Evin Prison after being convicted in April 2012 of “gathering and colluding against state security” and “spreading propaganda against the system” by Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran. Amnesty International considers Reza Shahabi a prisoner of conscience and will continue campaigning for his unconditional release if he is returned to prison.
No further action is required from the UA network at this time. Many thanks to all who sent appeals.
This is the first update of UA 2/13. Further information: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/MDE13/001/2013/en
Reza Shahabi was previously the subject of UA 137/10 and follow-ups. Further information: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/MDE13/027/2012/en
Name: Reza Shahabi
Gender m/f: m
Further information on UA: 2/13 Index MDE 13/002/2013 Issue Date: 10 January 2013