Iran: Detentions of Political Prisoners Continue
In response to Iran’s continued detention of two American citizens, Siamak Namazi and Baquer Namazi, and hundreds of other political prisoners, Freedom House made the following statement:
“Iran’s detention of two American-Iranians shows that visitors risk being targeted for arrest and used as political pawns,” said Dokhi Fassihian, senior program manager for Middle East and North Africa programs. “The United States, the EU, and members of the UN Human Rights Council should redouble efforts to gain the release of the hundreds of political prisoners languishing in Iranian jails, and to end the practice of hostage-taking of dual nationals.”
Iranian-American businessman Siamak Namazi was arrested October 15, 2015 in Tehran while in the country visiting family. The only U.S. citizen known to be held in Iran but not included in Iran’s January release of American prisoners, he has been denied access to an attorney and visits by his family. His father, Baquer Namazi, 80, was arrested on February 24, 2016.
Iran is rated Not Free in Freedom in the World 2016, Not Free in Freedom of the Press 2015, and Not Free in Freedom on the Net 2015.
Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.