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Witness Statement: Hassan Zarezadeh Ardeshir

Detention

9. When I got out of the car, I saw Amaken’s name displayed on a board on a wall. I could see that because I was not properly blindfolded. At that moment, I realized that I would be imprisoned longer than I was imagining.

10. I was taken down to the basement and remained there for three to four hours. I was given a sandwich in Amaken. The name of the restaurant was on the paper wrapped around the sandwich. Amaken, however, was only a cover up for the Parallel Intelligence Agency. Amaken is a several story building and its basement was used by the PIA. I had already heard that a part of Amaken was being used to put pressure on political and cultural activists to stop them. Mr. Mohammad Ali Safari, a well-known lawyer and journalist, was one of those who was called to Amaken and questioned but died after a couple days because of the pressure interrogators put on him.

11. Three or four hours later, I was handed over to the PIA. The people had come from the Central Police Intelligence Service department, which was helping the PIA. The PIA handcuffed and blindfolded me and took me out to a Volkswagen car. The car did not go directly to its destination. It moved from one street to another and then another. The car was moving in circles. They wanted me to lose my sense of direction. Finally they took me to Khatam-ul Anbiyyah (henceforth I call it Khatam) prison.

12. Khatam was a very dangerous place. I was confined in a solitary cell; the threats started immediately and I was under huge stress all the time. They wanted to break me, demoralize me, and devoid me of my self-esteem. The guard at the prison greeted me with threatening words by saying “[H]ere we’ll skin you alive and silence you!”

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Tagged as:

Cyber Journalism, Secret Prisons, Imprisonment