Thursday, 28 June 2012

Campaign to send emails for the jailed blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki URGENT

    Campaign to send emails for the

     jailed blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki  

    Iranian blogger on hunger strike close to death, warn fellow prisoners

    Hossein Ronaghi Maleki has been sentenced to 15 years for 'insulting' the Iranian supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

    Hossein Ronaghi Maleki
    Iranian blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki

    Human rights activists have raised serious concerns about the health of Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, an Iranian blogger on hunger strike in protest at his 15-year jail sentence and the authorities' refusal to grant him prison leave despite severe medical conditions.

    Ronaghi Maleki, 27, was arrested in December 2009 following the unrest in the aftermath of Iran's disputed presidential elections. He was picked up from his father's house in the city of Malekan in Iran's province of East Azerbaijan and taken to Tehran's notorious Evin prison where he spent 376 days in solitary confinement.

    Maleki who blogged under the nickname Babak Khorramdin (a reference to an ancient Persian freedom fighter from Azerbaijan) was sentenced to 15 years in jail in 2010 on charges of "spreading propaganda against the regime", "membership of the internet group Iran Proxy" and "insulting the Iranian supreme leader [Ayatollah Ali Khamenei] and the president [Mahmoud Ahmadinejad]".

    According to the Committee for Human Rights Reporters in Iran, Maleki's expertise was in computer programming and setting up websites aimed at circumventing online censorship and establishing ways to access blocked addresses.

    His sentence has sparked outrage among human rights groups including Amnesty International, which said he is "held solely on account of his peaceful exercise of his right to freedom of expression".

    While in jail, Maleki has developed a kidney disease and undergone at least four operations. He is currently kept in Tehran's Hashemi-Nejad hospital awaiting another operation. He started his latest hunger strike on May 26.

    According to the blogger's father, Ahmad Ronaghi Maleki, the authorities have so far refused to grant him medical leave despite receiving a doctor's order to do so.

    This week more than 100 of Maleki's fellow prisoners in Evin wrote a letter to the authorities warning that the blogger would die if not provided with appropriate medical care. In their letter, the prisoners warned Maleki might experience the same fate of Hoda Saber, a political prisoner who died last June on hunger strike.

    Hoda Saber, a 52-year-old activist from the opposition Nationalist-Religious movement, died after a cardiac complication, which his wife claimed at the time that was brought on by his hunger strike.


  • We are asking everyone to send an email to US academic and friend of the Islamic Republic, Heather Gautney [] to speak for Hossein and ask for his release.

     Fordham university lecturer and Wall Street occupier, Heather Gautney, went on a trip to the Islamic Republic and showered praise on the religious dictatorship in Iran. She held several interviews after her trip where she continued to praise the regime and even went as far as saying She "did not come across one negative thing" during her trip.

    If Heather Gautney does decide to speak for Hossein, it will be a massive blow to the regime, after all the propaganda they made of Gautney's visit. Even if she remains silent, it will show people like Gautney that going to bed with the Islamic Republic will have consequences.

    We hope you will take time and write a few lines and email Heather Gautney. We hope she will receive thousands of emails in her inbox about Hossein.

    You can find out more about Heather Gautney here:

    This weblog was created to act as a platform for the voice of secular pro-democracy activists in and outside Iran who are struggling against the religious dictatorship of the Islamic clerics in Iran. My favourite quote: "Evil only prevails when the good stay silent"