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Witness Statement: Shadi Sadr

Release and First Indictment


84. After this last interrogation, another four days went by until my possessions were returned to me. Still I did not believe I was being released until it actually happened. Any time the door opened to my cell, I still thought they might take me away for another interrogation.

85. I was finally released in the early morning of Wednesday, July 29, 2009. At the time I was released I had no intention of leaving Iran. However the following Sunday I woke up to the sound of my telephone ringing. My friend was on the line—she read the Kayhan newspaper and saw that an indictment for events following the election had been issued. My name was listed as one of the leaders of the women’s movement subgroup in an alleged ‘velvet revolution’ to overthrow the Iranian state.

86. The interesting thing about the indictment was that although I was named in connection with causing the post-election unrest, in my interrogations there was no major focus on my having ties to the ‘green movement’. The primary focus of all my interrogations seemed to be that I was an agent of the women’s movement that was trying to overthrow the Iranian government.

87. The charge of overthrow of the government was very serious. That night, I was watching television and there was a news report about the indictment. I saw that they were playing Mohammad-Ali Abtahi’s confession and the confession of several others. At that point, it clicked. There was no doubt in my mind that the state authorities wanted to charge me with the same things and bring me back to prison to give a forced confession under pressure and torture and make admissions against myself and the women’s movement. I did not want this to happen. I decided to leave Iran. 48 hours later I was on Turkish soil.

Escape from Iran


88. Since no travel ban had been placed on me, I could leave Turkey legally. The authorities continued to call my house even after I had left Iran.

89. In April 2010, I received a sentence in absentia of imprisonment and lashes in connection to my March 2007 arrest. I still have not received a court date for the crimes for which I was charged in connection to my last arrest.

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Tagged as:

Statement, Due Process, Right to an Attorney, Equality Before the Law, Discrimination