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Witness Statement: Fariba Davoodi Mohajer

31. Interrogations were only interrupted when it was time to pray. During azzan3 they returned me to my cell so I could pray but they never took my blindfold off. I was blindfolded even when I visited the restroom. Detainees were never allowed to enter the hallways at the same time, and the cell doors were never opened simultaneously.

Lack of Accommodations

 

32. I was confronted with lots of problems at the male facility. The lack of female guards and feminine hygiene products caused lots of problems for me. After a while, I needed feminine hygienic products while in prison. But they were not accessible there and I could not ask the male guard or the male interrogators to bring me some. So I requested that they bring in a woman so I could share my needs with her. When she came, I realized that like me, she was blindfolded. I told her what hygienic products I needed. That woman told me that during her time working in the prisons, which exceeded 15 years, she had never seen a case like mine. She told me that she didn’t know where they had brought her either, and added that they circled around the city for a while so that she would lose her sense of direction. I saw that woman only twice. Both times were when she brought me female hygienic products.

33. Going to the bathroom was also a problem. They refused to take off my blindfold. A male guard would hold one end of a rope and I would hold the other end. They would then transfer me from the narrow hallway to the bathroom, and would not allow me to stay there for more than a few minutes.

34. One other issue that I faced while in prison was the lack of access to a shower. In prison, the shower had no doors and cleaning supplies were used only for the men. When I wanted to take a shower, one of the guards would stand behind the door so I could take a shower. I wanted to close the door, but the guard wouldn’t let me. I could not take a shower with the door open, in the presence of an unknown man. Of course the guard assured me that he would stand behind the door and turn around so I could take my shower. But I just couldn’t convince myself to take a shower in the guard’s presence, even if he stood behind the door and turned around so I could take my shower.

35. My fears were to some extent justified because one of the midnight guards whose shift was every other night checked me out from the small window of my cell for 10 to 15 minutes. The way he looked at me worried me. When he came and stared at me, I covered myself with three dirty blankets that they had given me the very first day (one of which was covered in the vomit of a previous detainee) and I avoided looking at the door. But the guard continued to stare at me. I think he had evil intentions, otherwise why would he stare at me so late at night? There was enough light in the room to ensure that I was alive and hadn’t escaped from prison. So why did that prison guard keep staring at me?

3 The Muslim call to prayer.

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Tagged as:

Cyber Journalism, Secret Prisons, Imprisonment, Statement